India, US agree on greater trade facilities for compliant exporters


NEW DELHI: The Central Indirect Taxes and Customs Council of India (CBIC) and the United States Customs and Border Protection have agreed to extend the facilities to exporters from their respective countries who meet certain compliance criteria .

This was agreed as part of a mutual recognition agreement between the two agencies of the Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) program, a regime that grants certain privileges to actors in international trade who are accredited by the authorities on the basis of their background. The privileges include greater confidence in returns, in addition to faster tax refunds and expedited dispute resolution.

The CBIC, in an update on Monday, said the deal was reached in a virtual meeting last week. “With the volume of trade with the United States exceeding $ 80,000 million during the year 2020-2021, this initiative should also give a positive boost to trade. With the implementation of the Mutual Recognition Agreement, goods exported by Indian AEOs will benefit from increased trade facilitation at all ports of entry into the United States, ”the CBIC said in the update. .

In international trade, AEOs are entities approved by customs authorities to comply with supply chain security standards, based on documentation and other forms of verification. This voluntary system is open to importers, exporters, logistics providers, custodians or terminal operators, customs brokers and warehouse operators. Self-declaration of origin of AEO goods is also accepted.

The CBIC said the development was important in light of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call to reach $ 400 billion in exports during this year. Cross-border trade is a crucial part of the economic recovery of many countries, including India. New Delhi also offers incentives to stimulate local manufacturing and build infrastructure.

During the pandemic, the indirect tax administration stepped up the digitization of trade-related documents to reduce the physical interface between people and improve the ease of doing business. Cross-border trade was one of the areas the World Bank highlighted where India needed to reform to improve its overall ease of doing business score.

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