Trade Facilitation - Case 1: "Single Window" for International Trade

Article From:   Time:2017/11/21 17:31:47 【Size:B M SPrint

(Provided by China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone)

"Single window" for international trade can allow the foreign trade enterprises to submit the documents or electronic data required by the import and export of goods or transshipment to the relevant departments through an entrance and can also receive the review status information and results, so as to solve the problem of repeated declaration and documents submission. The establishment of the "Single window" for international trade is an important part of the regulatory system innovation of China (Shanghai) Pilot Free Trade Zone (hereinafter referred to as the Shanghai Free Trade Zone) and also an important approach to follow the international prevailing rules, to reduce the enterprise cost and to improve the level of trade facilitation.

I. Main practice

The Shanghai "Single window" for international trade is led by the Shanghai Municipal Office for Port Services and is jointly established by 17 departments such as the customs, inspection and quarantine, maritime, frontier defense, development and reform, commerce, transport, economy and information technology, finance, postal service, civil aviation, foreign exchange, taxation, food and drug administration and the forestry department (Endangered Species Import and Export Management Office), airport and port. The "Single window" realizes the "One platform, once submission, result feedback and data sharing" and makes the client mode of enterprise declaration based on stand-alone machine changed to the web declaration based on Internet; the list recording for the goods customs clearance is first created in China, which implements the innovation and reform of the declaration mode.

(1) Basic function design.

Shanghai "Single window" for international trade includes such 6 functional parts as the import and export of goods, declaration of the means of transport, trade permit, qualification processing, payment and settlement and information query, covering the main steps of the port customs regulation and international trade activities.

In the main steps of the port customs declaration and supervision, goods import and export declaration and transport goods declaration can be submitted through the "Single window", which can be respectively sent to the system of the regulatory unit; the declaration results will be announced through the "Single window" and the regulatory unit will share the regulatory status and results through the "Single window".

1. Goods import and export declaration. It includes the import and export declaration of the goods by sea and by air and the inbound and outbound declaration of the goods under special regulation of the customs. The enterprise can submit the data reporting and the attached documents at once through the customs clearance form of "Single window" in the form of the input. The enterprise can implement both customs declaration and inspection at the same time or either of them. The customs inspection instruction for the goods to be inspected can be searched and matched in the "Single window". The foreign trade enterprises and customs clearance agent can exchange the date declared through the "Single window".

2. Declaration of the transport facilities. It includes the ship import and export declaration and ship export online discharge; the cargo manifest information reporting and sharing; aircraft entry and exit declaration. The enterprise can print the international ship certificate by itself through the "Single window".

3. Trade license application. It will be linked to the 5 types of trade licenses application system of the commerce department (Import license, automatic import license, fertilizer import customs quota certificate, export license, dual-use items and technology import and export license) and also linked to the application system of wildlife import and export certificate of the State Forestry Administration (Endangered Species Import and Export Management Office). Meanwhile the declaration function of import customs quota certificate of the agricultural products (wheat, corn, rice, cotton) and the drug import customs clearance single declaration system of the food and drug administration are developed.

4. Taxes and fees payment. It will be linked to the systems of tariff payment, export tax rebates, foreign exchange consignment report, inspection and quarantine and maritime fees payment. 

5. Application of enterprise qualification. It includes the qualifications of a foreign trade operator, customs declaration, inspection and quarantine of the commerce department. The review result of the commerce department will be shared with the customs through the "Single window"; through information sharing, the customs can reduce the repeated input of the enterprise data.

6. Information query. Application status and results of enterprise can query the port customs clearance, and tariff payment status; Regulators can query and sharing information, regulation and public credit information platform of Shanghai and the legal person enterprise basic data, the credit information of the repository. 

In addition, the online project includes: the pilot plan to deal with and information sharing, international convention for the record information sharing and imported exhibits declaration, application of the postal agency international postal parcels, etc.

(2) Construction and operation & maintenance service mode.

The inspection unit and pilot enterprise should participate in the whole process of design and development of the "Single window" and should listen to the advice of pilot enterprise, to strive to accurately reflect the enterprise demand and to promote the optimization of regulatory process and simplification of regulatory procedures. Technical implementation of the project construction and the operations & maintenance should be responsible by the operation unit of Shanghai Electronic Port.

1. The relevant departments should cooperate with each other relying on the electronic port. Relying on the existing application functions and its technical development strength of the Shanghai Electronic Port platform, the departments of customs, inspection and quarantine, maritime and frontier defense and other departments achieve the data sharing and system docking; the enterprise declaration data is sent to the information system of each department via the "Single window", and the feedback of state information and processing result is given to the enterprise through the "single window". 

Trade enterprises

(including transport)

Single window platform


Customs declaration of goods

Customs electronic payment

Inspection and quarantine declaration

Marine declaration

Frontier declaration


Schematic diagram of single window


2. Adopting the Internet mode for unified login & management. "Single window" goods declaration is made by B/S web mode, and the user registration is applied. At the same time, the identity authentication and account system of original system should be still maintained, which means that the original identity (card) and account can be used for log on to the "single window" for declaration.

3. Full respect for enterprise needs. At the early stage of the project construction, 10 different types of companies were invited to participate in the demonstration, design, experiencing and improvement of the goods declaration function. "Single window" specially provides the import and export interface for the pilot enterprises with good informatization conditions, which allows direct docking with the enterprise ERP system; after the ERP system automatically generates the data for declaration, the bulk of data will be inputted into the "Single window", which greatly improves the work efficiency of the enterprise.

4. The relevant units cooperate with each other in operations & maintenance. The original operating subject of declaration system of Shanghai Electronic Port Platform is still responsible for the operation & maintenance of the system and customer. At the same time, the relevant units should establish the joint operation & maintenance team, to co-undertake the operation & maintenance of the "Single window" and to form a unified operation service specification, providing 7*24 hours service.

II. Practical effect

Compared with the traditional mode of customs declaration, the mode of "Single window" has significant advantages. By the end of September 2015, more than 1,100 enterprises of various types have opened an account in the Shanghai "Single window" for the international trade. About 100,000 pieces of the custom declarations were carried out through the declaration form; the inspection and quarantine declaration system has implemented the overall switch and completed more than 2 million pieces of declarations; the ship declaration basically covers main shipping agency enterprises.

(1) Providing convenience for business, improving customs clearance efficiency and reducing the enterprise cost.

In the cargo customs clearance, the enterprise should undergo 8 steps for the port customs clearance and regulatory business according to the original way, including log on the customs declaration system, customs tariff payment system, inspection and quarantine declaration system, inspection and quarantine inspection system, as well as the submission of the attached documents to the scene of the inspection and quarantine, box selection at the customs examination site, transfer of relevant written documents between the departments of customs declaration and the tariff payment transfer, transfer of the customs clearance form between the departments of customs and inspection and quarantine declaration.

Now, the "Single window" can provide "One stop" service (8 in 1) for the enterprises by process optimization and data integration & simplification. The "Click to access, a form input and once submission" has been realized for various customs declaration operations, which avoids the log on multiple systems and reduces the number of quarantine & declaration data items to 103, including the same 32 data items only needing to be entered once; all of these improve the operating experience of the declaration enterprise, reduce the workload of input, the error rate and about 30% of the labor cost; Internet-based declaration mode allows the enterprise to choose the declaration place as required and to reasonably arrange the human resource and business resources; through two-way transmission of the trade and logistics with the agency, the foreign trade enterprise can know the customs clearance and regulatory state, results and time of the goods and transport facilities, which facilitates the optimization of supply chain and further reduces the operating costs.

In terms of international ship networking approval, the enterprise should submit the relevant written document to the competent department for application, submission, stamping and printing in the original way. But now, the enterprise can make ship declaration via the "Single window"; the port regulatory departments deal with the formalities and send back the electronic license to the "Single window", and the maritime sector will deal with the ship export formalities by virtue of such license; the shipping agency can print ship export license via the platform, to effectively save manpower and time cost.

(2) The business process is optimized to promote the port administrative department to realize "Three cooperation" and to save resources for supervision.

The serial law enforcement process is driven to be changed to parallel law enforcement process. Click to declaration and feedback of the "Single window" successfully change the serial mode to parallel mode of the customs clearance process of the import and export goods and the inbound and outbound vessels. 

The cooperation of "Three ones" between the inspection and customs clearance is realized. Through the organic integration of customs, inspection and quarantine, customs clearance and supervision process and the information submission and feedback "Single window", the inspection and customs clearance of "Once declaration, once inspection and once approval" has been realized. 

It promotes the law enforcement linkage of the relevant port administrative departments. The form of "Single window" ensures the consistency of the data submitted to the different regulatory departments by the enterprise. At the same time, the port administrative department implements the sharing and exchange of the customs form, enterprise qualification and regulatory status and the results, which effectively promotes the mutual recognition of the regulation and mutual help of the law enforcement and the law enforcement process linkage optimization and gives full play to the advantages of the overall law enforcement. For example, in the coordination and regulation of the transport facilities, the ship dynamic information of the maritime sector can be shared with the regulators such as customs, inspection and quarantine and frontier inspection on real-time, so as to effectively promote the mutual help of the law enforcement.

III. Working thought of next step

At present, Shanghai has formed the construction and promotion of "Single window" version 2.0, which based on version 1.0 further promotes the functions improvement, areas expanding, convenient use, information sharing and operation management; the "Single window" will gradually cover the whole process of international trade and improve the enterprise efficiency.

Version 2.0 constructs 16 projects and tasks, mainly including the goods inspection, entry goods receipt of free trade zone, cruise personnel information declaration, certificate of origin, export tax refund formalities, release of the customs clearance time and information disclosure, regulatory state and results information sharing as well as mobile version of "Single window". The number of the member departments including the CCPIT reaches to 18.

    In addition, Version 2.0 will further improve the operation & maintenance mechanism of "Single window". Based on preliminary consideration, the main customs declaration system operational costs would be taken as the basic public service and would be included in the fiscal expenditure project; the solution is being refined and is expected to be implemented by the end of 2015. In addition, the "Single window" scheme for Yangtze River delta is also under the study. Next, the research on national certificate of origin, certificate of product inspection and quarantine, customs supervision information networking verification or mutual recognition will also be promoted based on the construction situation of the Asia-Pacific demonstration electronic port operations center.