The Bureau of Customs (BOC) hopes to reduce corruption and improve transparency in the agency with the launch of six computerization projects that aims to streamline customs processes and operations.
“Through consultation and dialogue with various concerned stakeholders, we have put together new programs and customer-oriented processes to ensure that our work is done with more efficiency and transparency,” Customs Commissioner Rey Leonardo Guerrero said in a speech during the official launch of the projects on June 17.
The six are the Document Tracking System (DTS), BOC Customer Care Portal (Ticketing System), Dashboard System, Goods Declaration and Verification System (GDVS), National Value Verification System (NNVS), and Alert Order Monitoring System (AOMS).
In a media briefing after the event, Guerrero added that the goal of the systems is to “minimize [and] eliminate [the] opportunity for corruption” by limiting human intervention.
Guerrero noted that the in-house systems were pilot-tested in select ports for few months to de-bug them and eliminate glitches before full implementation. The programs are under one of BOC’s 10-point Priority Program, which aims to enhance the agency’s information and technology system and cargo clearance process.
Guerrero noted that BOC’s full-scale modernization “takes time and resources to implement but in the meantime, hindi naman nating pwedeng sabihing ipagpaliban na lng muna [we cannot just postpone modernization] so we have to initiate at our level… for us to improve our performance.”
The Custom’s Chief said BOC is already working closely with the World Bank and other service providers on a full-scale modernization program. Earlier, he said BOC plans to conduct a feasibility study in implementing a project proposed two years ago by the World Bank. The project, which seeks to modernize operations and automate systems at the customs agency, is one of the options being considered for the bureau’s automation plan. — www.portcalls.com