A total of $36 million will be provided by the Federal Government over four years to improve and simplify trade processes at the border.
“A Simplified Trade System will improve processes at the border to support Australia’s exporters and importers to invest and grow local jobs. Setting the foundations for a Trade Single Window is an important part of this work and will build on reforms of trade regulations and processes to make it easier for businesses to integrate into global supply chains,” a Budget statement reads.
Reforms will include a standardisation of information requirements to enable a future Trade Single Window and a consultation will take place over the coming months.
A Trade Single Window enables importers and exporters to submit documentation and information to multiple government bodies and regulatory agencies once via an online portal which reduces time, effort, cost and the likelihood of mistake (such as making typographic errors). Some versions of the Single Trade Window also make all applicable trade-related laws, tariffs, regulations, forms and other useful information available in the one place.
However, as the World Bank notes, creation of a Trade Single Window is not easy.
“Sustainable institutional reform is hard when only one government agency is involved, but the risks and challenges are multiplied exponentially when many agencies are involved…Most of the challenges are not associated with technology but rather getting individual agencies to collaborate to achieve a collective goal,” it notes.
Monies for the Australian project will be provided over a four year period. Funds of $14 million will be allocated in the 2020-2021 financial year and, in the 2021-22 financial year, that figure rises to $18 million. Two million dollars are then provided in the financial years ending 2023 and 2024.