DUBAI: Authorities in the UAE collect four per cent customs duty from traders. This will be now transferred to the countries of final destination by the country’s customs authority.
The UAE’s Federal Customs Authority has implemented an electronic clearing system nicknamed ‘Tam’ under which levies collected at ports in the country will be transferred to other members in the GCC Customs Union.
The new automatic system, which is in line with the UAE’s initiative of smart government, will boost the GCC Customs Union.
“The system was implemented in October and in its 45 days of operations, it has successfully handled 11,000 transactions and collected Dh91 million of customs levies,” said Mohammed Jumaa Buosaiba, director-general of the Federal Customs Authority (FCA).
The new electronic system replaces an age-old manual system that was not only slow but also inefficient, he said.
Each of the seven emirates has its own port, where vessels bring all types of commercial and industrial cargoes, which are then re-exported to the rest of the GCC countries.
Authorities in various emirates collect four per cent customs duty from traders, which will be now transferred to the countries of final destination by the UAE’s FCA.
Alia Al Marmoom, director of customs affairs at FCA, said the new service would greatly facilitate trade and commerce as procedures have become more efficient.
“The implementation represents a boost for the success of the GCC Customs Union” as more features would be added to it. This would help the trading community, she said.
The new automatic system has simplified procedures and expedited the approval and transfer of cleared amounts, with 11,000 transactions completed between October 15 and December 15.
The volume of direct non-oil trade between the UAE and the remaining GCC members is worth Dh750 billion from 2003 until the end of the first half of 2015.
“The volume of non-oil imports to the UAE from GCC countries during the period amounted to Dh286 billion, with UAE exports amounting to Dh186 billion, while re-exports reached Dh279 billion,” she said.
The value of exports and re-exports shows that the UAE represents a strategic source of goods and commodities for the GCC countries, which confirms its key role in the Tam system for customs clearing, she said.
The UAE, which serves as the port of entry into the high-growth GCC region, collected Dh8.5 billion in customs duties for the GCC as opposed to Dh1.6 billion collected for itself, she added.
Al Marmoom said the UAE introduced the Tam system at the emirate level as well as on the pan-Gulf level, linking all stakeholders on a real-time basis.
The results of the implementation of the second stage of Tam will be reviewed after one year to evaluate its success and make any improvements.
The next stage will integrate the customs data of goods exchanged and sharing of trade-related documents, she informed.