Kentaro Kato, Research Analyst at Washington CORE, contributed an article on e-customs and digital platforms for international trade which appears to the Japan Machinery Center for Trade and Investment (JMC) June 2020 Member Newsletter. JMC is one of the major export industry associations, representing over 240 companies from the machinery, electronics, ICT, textile and automotive industries.
In his article, Kato argues that the digitalization of trade processes is one of the crucial infrastructure to facilitate & accelerate recovery of the global economy from the COVID-19 crisis. In specific, many countries are working on establishing and improving national “Single Window systems,” which is one-stop trade data entry portals for importers/exporters and regulatory authorities to improve the speed of document processing. Some countries in South America and Asia have begun working to establish interoperability with the Single Windows of other nations so that they can reference information already processed by other countries, reducing each country’s processing burden.
Along with these national efforts, some of global tech companies and shipping companies, including NTT Data, IBM, Maersk and others have also been working on regional shipping logistics digital platforms, which could fully take advantage of interoperable single window systems.
Kato concludes that E-Customs & digital platforms for global trade is the key to global economic recovery in the post COVID-19 era while it is worthy of continuing to monitor interregional adjustment & integration efforts driven by regional and global politics.