Finance Minister Dr Prakash Sharan Mahat has underlined the need for the digitalization of customs administration to enhance its effectiveness. Speaking at a program organized to mark the 72nd International Customs Day here today, the Minister echoed the need for collective efforts to build a robust customs administration by applying available technology, international criteria, and good practices to it.
As he assessed, the customs administration is not motivated to use new innovations in the customs service. It is necessary to give priority to the use of advanced technology in customs service for its effectiveness and transparency as well, according to the minister. The Department of Customs, Director General, Shobhakant Paudel, underlined the need for professionalism and integrity in customs service.
He said the department is ready to switch to paperless, faceless, and contactless systems in customs service by improving customs infrastructure. Revenue Secretary Dr. Ram Prasad Ghimire said the customs administration is not just a means of collecting revenues; its role is crucial to making domestic and foreign trade decent and systematic.
He insisted on further improvements in the customs administration. Finance Ministry Secretary Dr. Krishnahari Pushkar said the ministry has accorded priority to the investment in customs administration. The department is witnessing improvements in collaboration with the private sector, he said. Former Department Directors General Tankamani Sharma and Krishnahari Baskota called for further systematizing customs administration, making it private-sector friendly.
Nepal Chamber of Commerce president Rajendra Malla and Confederation of Nepalese Industries president Rajesh Kumar Agrawal called for making the customs service compatible with time with control of smuggling of goods. On the occasion, Finance Minister Dr. Mahat launched the service for electric signatures, inaugurated the customs museum, and released the ‘Customs Souvenir’. On the occasion, former Director General Sharma was conferred with the ‘letter of honor’.
Journalist Bhagawat Bhattarai of Setopati.com was honored with a cash prize of Rs 15,000 in recognition of his contribution to the finance, revenue, and management sectors. Similarly, the department’s computer engineer, Mohammed Raheem Ansari, received the ‘best employee’ award. On the occasion, the department honored 25 employees and eight customs agents.