18 Jun 09 - Albania adopts nationwide operation of ASYCUDA
ASYCUDA World - the latest version of UNCTAD's automated customs system - has been successfully implemented in Albania, where it will be used nationwide by over 1,100 Customs officials and economic operators.
At the launch of the nationwide operation of the Albanian ASYCUDA system, the Albanian Deputy-Minister of Finance, Mr. Florion Mima, stressed the importance of the ASYCUDA project, extended his high appreciation to the technical assistance and support by UNCTAD, and reiterated the strong commitment of the Government to continue the implementation of all ASYCUDAWorld functions, capitalizing on its state-of-the-art information technologies for e-government and e-business.
The initial installation of ASYCUDA in Albania was funded by the European Commission. The implementation of the latest version of the system — named ASYCUDAWorld — has been fully financed by the Albanian Government.
The new system allows for a strong reduction on the clearance time of goods and offers risk-management, anti-corruption measures, strong audit and monitoring functions for Customs Headquarters, timely and accurate statistics and mobile customs anti-smuggling units with en-route control tools.
The system was effectively implemented in just 14 months and covers all customs regimes. During the first five months of its operation, 130,000 declarations were processed by 5,700 companies. The numbers of steps, documents and customs officers involved in Customs clearance process were reduced significantly.
Following the launching of the nationwide operation of ASYCUDA, the UNCTAD delegation, led by the Deputy Secretary-General, Mr. Petko Draganov met with Mr. Alfred Prifti, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Finance, Mr. Endri Pema, Director General of Customs as well as with the Customs management team and the ASYCUDA World Project Team.
The delegation also visited the customs offices in Durres Port and at the Tirana International Airport/Cargo. Discussions took place with customs brokers, express carriers and other users who highlighted the advantages of the computerization of customs operations and the use of a centralized real-time system.
ASYCUDA is UNCTAD´s largest technical assistance programme and has helped modernize customs operations in more than 90 countries around the world.