Trade Facilitation Projects

According the World Bank Doing Business Report[1], countries with “efficient customs, good transport networks and fewer document requirements… are more competitive globally”.  With a commitment to make our economy more competitive, trade facilitation has to be a key pillar of the Government’s economic growth agenda, and must underpin our efforts to become a global logistics hub. However, in 2014 Jamaica was ranked 118 out of 189 economies in the Trading across Borders indicator of the Doing Business Ranking. When compared to our 2008 rank of 92/178, this reflects a 26 point fall in the ranking over the last six years, with a significant fall of 12 places in the last two years alone.

 

Jamaica

Global Benchmark[2]

Regional Benchmark[3]

2008

2014

2008

2014

2008

2014

Documents to export (number)

6

6

3

2

5

4

Time to export (days)

21

20

5

6

14

9

Cost to export (US$ per container)

1,750

1,530

390

450

693

805

Documents to import (number)

6

7

3

2

5

6

Time to import (days)

22

17

3

4

18

9

Cost to import (US$ per container)

1,350

2,130

367

4

1100

1,350

 

Nonetheless, the data indicates that there has been some improvement. Between 2008 and 2014, the country has improved the time to import from an average of 22 days in 2008 to 17 in 2014 and the time to export from 21 to 20 days during that same time. The cost to export has also been reduced from an average of US$1,750 per container to US$1,530 per container. What has not improved is the bureaucracy, which has actually seen an increase in the number of documents importers need to file to facilitate their trading activities.

In keeping with the impending World Trade Organisation (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement to streamline trade practices across the world, the PSTM Programme includes two projects aimed at addressing two areas in need of critical attention: the establishment of a single window facility for trade facilitation and the rationalisation of trade inspections.



[1] World Bank. 2007. Doing Business 2008. Washington, D.C.: World Bank Group, available at http://www.doingbusiness.org

[2] The global benchmark is provided by the best performers globally for that indicator: 2008 - Canada ( documents to export); Denmark (time to export and documents for import); China (cost to export); Singapore (time for import and cost to import)| 2014 -  Iceland ( documents to export),

[3] the regional benchmark is based on the best performer among the comparator economies (as identified by the World Bank) in the region for that indicator for that year: 2008 – Antigua and Barbuda (documents for export),  Trinidad and Tobago ( time for export and cost to export), Grenada (documents for import), Dominica (time for import),  Trinidad and Tobago (cost to import) | 2014 – Grenada ( documents to export and time to export), St. Kitts and Nevis (cost to export), Grenada (documents to import and time to import), Puerto Rico (cost to import)