February, 17 2014 08:21:15

VN, Laos simplify border procedures

Trucks line up at Lao Bao Border Gate in central Quang Tri Province. Viet Nam and Laos want to promote the one-stop-shop model, which aims to simplify administrative procedures. — VNS Photo Truong Vi

QUANG TRI — Officials from the Vietnamese and Lao foreign ministries inspected the Lao Bao-Densavan international border gate and held a conference to expedite the implementation of the one-stop-shop (OSS) model there.

Attending the February 13-16 conference were Vietnamese Deputy Foreign Minister Ho Xuan Son and his Lao counterpart Buonkeut Sangsomsak.

The OSS model aims to simplify administrative procedures by minimising the number of offices one has to visit as well as the amount of paperwork to complete the procedures.

Inspections show that the gate's infrastructure has been upgraded, with the two sides' agencies working together to more closely supervise import-export and entry-exit activities.

The border gate has successfully deployed a new e-customs system, helping shorten the waiting time and making the customs clearance process much smoother and precise.

However, the two countries still have different regulations regarding customs and have yet to reach complete consensus on the best way to oversee procedures at the location.

While the OSS mechanism has been applied unofficially at the gate for several years, it has not been properly managed and therefore remained ineffective, the Lao side said.

Therefore, suggestions were made to rectify this at the conference. A plan was discussed to upgrade infrastructure and equipment further so that the OSS model can be officially and fully implemented as if January 1, 2015.

Accordingly, each side will set up a special working group in charge of preparing for the changeover. — VNS

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