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Jan 26, 2018

Customs Talks Improving Business

Colin Griffith

International Customs Day was observed around the world today in honor of this vital cog in the international financial and trade machine. As has become tradition, Belize’s Customs and Excise Department planned an outdoor open day in downtown Belize City at the Battlefield Park to bring its work to the general public along with selected partners. While their plans didn’t work out due to the inclement weather, Comptroller of Customs Colin Griffith detailed the changing face of his organization’s duties and responsibilities to consumers.

 

Colin Griffith, Comptroller of Customs and Excise

“There is major change within Customs administration throughout the world; and while it has been in the past where Customs administrations used to have at the front end revenue collection, it has now shifted to trade facilitation. It is recognized that when you start to communicate with business and have consultation and improve compliance, you get the same result as it was in the past as in respect to revenue collection. So that is what it is and also, it is the intention to improve the cost of doing business which would then go down to the consumers. It is the intention of the World Customs Organization to reduce the cost of doing business by some fifteen percent, and that is what we are working on. This Customs administration’s greatest message that we preach currently is compliance. And where there are infractions, we sit with the business community and court them into how to be compliant, for them even to recognize what is the cost in respect to you being charged. And that is why Customs, it is important that we have in all our legislation, a situation where we have out-of-court settlement; where we could discuss with them, and each and every out-of-court settlement is confidential; we are not able to disclose that information.”

 

Guest speaker was Minister of Defense John Saldivar, who spoke of the ways the department, its partners and the government fulfill this year’s theme, “A Secure Business Environment for Economic Development.”

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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