Project Design

Reforming the Regulatory Procedures for Import and Export: Guide for Practitioners, IFC, 2006

    Efficient import/export procedures are critical to facilitating trade and creating an environment conducive to economic development, growth, and direct foreign investment.

    The purpose of this guide is to assist World Bank (WB) and International Finance Corporation (IFC) staff, in particular Business Development Officers/Task Managers in the IFC field offices, as well as any other task managers, implement trade facilitation and Customs reform programs.

    This guide has been written from a non-technical perspective to be as practical as possible. It draws upon a host of technical documentation prepared by various international organizations involved in Customs reform and trade facilitation programs. It identifies key areas necessary to implement efficient and effective import/export procedures based on internationally recommended best practices.

    Examples of how some developing countries have successfully implemented particular reforms are referenced throughout the guide. The authors have not included many case studies and examples of individual countries, given the extensive and recent literature that exists on this. The WB published in 2005 the Customs Modernization Initiatives: Case Studies, which includes many country case studies; and the Customs Modernization Handbook, which provides numerous examples of specific reforms in different countries.

    This guide will assist task managers working to implement Customs reforms in determining:

    - Whether a country's import/export procedures are inefficient;
    - What symptoms to look for, and how to quantity the problems;
    - Where to find internationally accepted best practices to benchmark existing import / export procedures;
    - How to determine which parties or agencies are responsible for which bottlenecks;
    - Where to start, with whom to talk, who are the counterparts;
    - Who to win over or get on board;
    - Key elements of any project to be undertaken;
    - Dangers/problems to be aware of; and
    - Where to get further assistance.

    Associated Activities and Documents
    Synthesis documents
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