Chisinau, 4 May, 2017 – Today the European Union Border Assistance Mission to Moldova and Ukraine (EUBAM) presented to the public a study on the Customs procedures at Giurgiulesti International Free Port. The study seeks to increase the trade and competitiveness of the port by recommending measures to improve the efficiency of Customs, border, phyto-sanitary and veterinary procedures.
Focused on container traffic, the study reviews the work of several of the border control services charged with the clearance of cargo at the port and also identifies areas where through simplifying and modernising procedures, commercial enterprises could be expanded and international trade developed. Such efforts should not only benefit the border services but also enhance the potential for investment and commercial growth at the port.
The study was conducted in close co-operation with the Customs Service of the Republic of Moldova. Its Deputy Director, Iurie Ceban, emphasized that “trade facilitation and simplified procedures continue to represent the main objectives of the Customs Service reform agenda, which becomes a modern and proactive one. Giurgiulesti International Free Port, through its specific operations carried out in this area, represents a strategic location with an economic potential that can be constantly developed. That is why the priority of the Customs Service is the identification and implementation of the most innovative customs management tools which not only facilitate trade, but also create a competitive business environment for the residents of this area. And the recommendations made by experts in the study presented today will add value to our efforts to improve the customs clearance process in the Port.”
EU Ambassador to the Republic of Moldova, Pirkka Tapiola, mentioned during the event: “Giurgiulesti International Port constitutes a clear asset for the Republic of Moldova, in particular in the context of DCFTA implementation. I believe that we could use its potential further, and based on EUBAM’s support and recommendations, the port could maximize its capacity and efficiency.”
In highlighting the study’s importance, the Head of EUBAM, Ambassador Andrew Tesoriere noted that, “Giurgiulesti port, as Moldova’s only port accessible to seagoing shipping, matters hugely for Moldova’s longer-term prosperity. It literally puts Moldova on a wider global map. It represents a concerted effort by Moldova’s public and private sectors, with the technical support of EUBAM, to maximize the potential efficiency, performance and reputation of the Port”.
Twenty three conclusions and recommendations have been made in the study, covering five strategic areas of reform including the legal and regulatory framework, human resources, procedures, information exchange and infrastructure. Colin Gazeley, Head of EUBAM’s Border Management Department and author of the study underlined that it “highlights reforms to procedures and processes applied by the Customs Service of the Republic of Moldova and other border control services which if implemented would significantly enhance trade facilitation at the port, producing a competitive trading environment which not only encourages business growth but also importantly does not compromise the security and integrity of the Republic of Moldova’s border.”
Giurgiulesti International Free Port is the Republic of Moldova’s only sea port, located in the southwest of the country. In recent years it has seen a significant increase in cargo throughput with 876,274 tons of bulk cargo and 757,977 tons of containerised cargo passing through the port in 2016.
This is the second port study conducted by EUBAM, following the publication of a similar assessment in 2015 of the procedures at the ports of Odesa and Chornomorsk, in collaboration with Ukraine’s State Fiscal Service of Ukraine.