Importers speak about queues at customs checkpoints and delays in delivering cargo

Importers speak about queues at customs checkpoints and delays in delivering cargo

access_time2019-12-10 14:18:42

“Georgia’s trade policy is one of the most liberal in the world - 80% of imported goods are not subject to customs duties, procedures are simple and non-tariff barriers are minimal,” Finance Minister Ivane Machavariani said the other day.

However, the local business is not so optimistic - importers speak about queues at customs checkpoints and delays in cargo delivery.

“The queues have recently reduced, but very often importers are met in the so-called “yellow corridor”, which is very important in terms of time loss. Sometimes it takes 5 days to complete all the procedures for the clearance of goods within the law, and importers have to pay taxes for goods that are not delivered to the place, ” Iva Khasia, head of the Importers Association, notes.

According to Khasia, this is a very serious problem for the  business that loses time, but still the problem can be solved if there is political will.

In the words of  Levan Vepkhvadze, Executive Director of the Georgian Business Association, bureaucratic barriers at borders are connected with VAT fraud schemes.


“The main problem is unscrupulous companies that create fake  assets, and then demand the return of VAT.  Excessive strictness at the border can be explained by this fact. This does not directly affect decent businessmen, but they also suffer from it, ” the head of the Business Association explains.

He believes that customs can’t be  blamed because it fulfills its duties - it fixes all the goods to obtain adequate customs revenues that correspond to the real volume of imports.

 

“They are obliged to do this, otherwise they will  be accused of corruption. However, the problem is being solved and  the situation on the border has improved, ”Levan Vepkhvadze says.


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