World Bank supports Mongolia’s export diversification
In March, IFC launched the Mongolia Trade Facilitation and Agricultural Exports Competitiveness Project to help streamline trade and customs regulations, simplify border inspection practices, and enhance private sector capacity to meet export requirements in the next five years.
IFC, a member of the World Bank Group, along with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the General Agency for Specialized Inspection, and the Customs General Administration of Mongolia hosted an international conference in Ulaanbaatar today. The aim is to help Mongolia develop more efficient border inspection practices.
This will, subsequently, accelerate collaboration of border agencies to implement the country's commitments under the World Trade Organization's Trade Facilitation Agreement reducing the cost for trade — especially for emerging agriproducts exports.
At the conference — 'Trade Facilitation: Roles of Customs and Inspection Agencies' — Mongolian and international experts shared their learning and experience with regards to implementation of the WTO TFA in countries such as Mongolia, China, the Philippines, Korea, and the United Kingdom. More than 180 officials from the central and border units of GASI and Customs discussed how agencies could enhance practices to help Mongolia become more competitive in trade.
"Mongolian Customs, a member of the World Customs Organization, has set objectives to secure international trade, improve trader compliance, and to facilitate legitimate trade in its near-term strategy," said Bat-Erdene Yo, Deputy Director General of the Customs General Administration of Mongolia. "We are implementing customs control risk management by collaborating with customs stakeholders as well as international partners. The Authorized Economic Operator program, too, has been introduced. The international conference was timely and enhanced the knowledge and experience of our customs officials."
"GASI's collaboration with international partners such as IFC has resulted in notable achievements to reduce trade barriers and ensure trade security in recent years. These include reducing the number of days required for import and export certificate issuance by three to five days, using inspection checklists at border crossing points, and slashing inspection by 26 percent," said D. Enkhsaikhan, Deputy Chairman of GASI. "Going forward, GASI aims to play a significant role in the trade facilitation agenda by enhancing the infrastructure of border posts, quarantine facilities, warehouses, and IT systems."
The World Bank Group is taking a holistic approach to supporting Mongolia's export diversification. The World Bank is assisting exporters by providing export insurance and capacity-building grants through its Export Development Program. In March, IFC launched the Mongolia Trade Facilitation and Agricultural Exports Competitiveness Project to help streamline trade and customs regulations, simplify border inspection practices, and enhance private sector capacity to meet export requirements in the next five years. The conference marks an important milestone of the project.
"Developing countries — especially those that are landlocked — face considerable challenges when it comes to tackling trade facilitation issues. Recognizing this, the World Bank Group invests heavily in trade facilitation programs," said Dahlia Khalifa, Senior Manager, WBG Investment Climate Advisory Services. "We are committed to promoting Mongolia's trade and exports by providing hands-on advice and technical assistance in areas of risk management, Authorized Operators scheme, access to information, and capacity building."
This project is co-funded by the Trade Facilitation Support Program, a multi-donor program hosted by the WBG that helps developing countries align border processes and procedures with the WTO TFA.