Onboarding of 18 priority TRGAs on TradeNet underway

Onboarding of 18 priority TRGAs on TradeNet underway
Image by Gerd Altmann from Pixabay
  • 18 priority trade regulatory government agencies will be fully on board TradeNet by April 2023
  • Another batch of 18 TRGAs will start their onboarding procedures and deployment to the live environment of TradeNet three months after the 18 priority TRGAs
  • Onboarding of all TGRAs is expected to be completed by early 2024

Eighteen priority trade regulatory government agencies (TRGA) will be fully on board TradeNet by April 2023 while another 18 will start onboarding procedures thereafter, according to the Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA).

The 18 priority TRGAs are already in the “staging environment” of TradeNet and will be deployed to the “live environment” in two months’ time or by April, ARTA project development officer Francis Gabriel Santos said during a media event on February 10.

Santos said the 18 TRGAs’ workflows are already on the platform, but they are just tweaking their modules before they can go live, and that’s when the transacting public can start accessing and dealing with them through TradeNet.

The 18 priority TRGAs are the Bureau of Plant Industry, Fertilizer and Pesticide Authority, Philippine Nuclear Research Institute, Bureau of Agriculture and Fisheries Standards, Bureau of Quarantine, DTI-Export Marketing Bureau, National Meat Inspection Service, Philippine Coconut Authority, Philippine National Police-Civil Security Group -Firearms and Explosive Office; Sugar Regulatory Administration, Philippine Fiber Industry Development Authority, Bureau of Internal Revenue, Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas, National Commission for Culture and the Arts, Philippine Gaming Corporation, Forest Management Bureau, Office of the Protocol, and Board of Investments.

After the 18 priority TRGAs are fully onboarded, 18 more will start the same procedures and deployment to the live environment of TradeNet within three months. Onboarding of all TRGAs is expected by early 2024.

TradeNet is a platform for the automated and integrated licensing, permit, clearance, and certification system for TRGAs. It aims to connect 73 TRGAs to make trade facilitation processes interoperable and efficient.

There are already four agencies fully onboarded to TradeNet: the Bureau of Customs, Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency, Biodiversity Management Bureau, and National Tobacco Administration.

ARTA said BOC had already processed 430,241 certificates of origins, a huge chunk of which are for inbound cargoes, as of February 8, 2023.

The onboarding of more TRGAs follows the February 6 signing of an agreement between the Department of Finance (DOF) and Department of Information and Communications Technology (DICT) that defines the role of each agency in TradeNet and ensures the development and sustainability of the platform.

ARTA director general Ernesto Perez said during the same media event that TradeNet will streamline and automate the processes of TRGAs. He said it will fast-track the submission and processing of required documents since TRGAs will be interconnected and can share data through TradeNet, thus removing overlapping regulations in the process and unnecessary fees.

Perez said through TradeNet, processing of permits should be done within days and without the need to go to each and every TRGA that requires such.

He said the use of TradeNet can help address technical smuggling in the long run since the government can share information in the system. He noted, for example, that BOC and the Department of Agriculture can easily trace discrepancies through the platform.

TradeNet also serves as the country’s national single window, the platform required to connect to the Association of Southeast Asian Nations Single Window (ASW). The ASW is a regional initiative to speed up cargo clearance and promote regional economic integration by enabling the electronic exchange of border documents among the 10 ASEAN member states.

TradeNet is online platform for PH National Single Window

TradeNet replaces the NSW Phase 1, which is being operated by BOC following its launch in 2010 and deployment in 2011. In 2017, the NSW Steering Committee issued a resolution to adopt TradeNet as the new NSW instead.

In January, the Office of the President identified TradeNet as one of the identified priority digitalization programs of the government for 2023. – Roumina Pablo