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Saudi Arabia speeds up customs clearance

Jeddah: Saudi Arabia plans to conduct 90 per cent of its import and export transactions electronically by the end of this year. "This will reduce the time taken by customs to clear a transaction from one week to less than five minutes and only seconds in the future," said Faisal Al Moussa, director general of the Saudi project for e-transactions. He added the e-transactions project will be implemented in all land, sea and air posts.
Speaking at the Riyadh Chamber of Commerce and Industry yesterday on the project's experimental phase, Al Moussa said the project has executed more than a million e-transactions since it was launched in end-2005. These transactions, completed over the past two years, covered the Jeddah Islamic Port, King Abdul Aziz Port, and King Khalid International Airport. Al Moussa noted that the project is an electronic interface between the customs department and other concerned agencies as it covers 26 locations including eight seaports and four international airports in addition to other posts. He said 43 cargo agents and more than 320 customs clearers in Jeddah besides 30 cargo agents and 180 customs clearers in Dammam are using the system. The e-transactions project has been funded by the Saudi Public Investment Fund.  [04/01/08]


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