Vanuatu Customs and VCBF Association sign MOU

Yesterday marked an important day for the Department of Customs and Inland Revenue (DCIR), when the Director, Benjamin Malas signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Gabriel Gauchet, President of recently formed Vanuatu Customs Brokers

and Forwarders Association (VCBFA).

Four years ago licensed customs brokers didn’t exist, however with the advent of the new Customs legislation in December 2013 their role was given legal recognition, and their functions managed through a licensing regime.

Both the President of the Association and the DCIR Director, acknowledged that signing of the agreement established a more mature and collaborative relationship, which will improve compliance levels and assist in facilitating trade.

The MOU recognizes that communication with and training of customs brokers and their clients are the cornerstones of building a private sector which can be an effective partner in border security and facilitation of legitimate trade.

The VCBFA will promote the role of customs brokers and freight forwarders, through its representation of customs brokers’ interests and its commitment to the development of broker education and training.

In his remarks before signing the MOU, Director Malas said it was to Vanuatu’s great advantage to have a professional body such as the VCBFA supporting trade facilitation initiatives and working in collaboration with DCIR as the Department continues to implement reforms and capacity building initiatives.

He also mentioned that it was through this strong partnership with customs brokers that DCIR was able to achieved its revenue target for the past years.

In an informal note the Director also gave recognition to some of the customs brokers present, with whom he had worked when he first joined the Department as a young customs officer many years before.

(Source: Vanuatu Daily Post)

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