The Bangladesh Garment Makers and Exporters Association is certainly going to start automation of Utilisation Declaration issuance on January 16 to get efficiency and transparency along the way.
There have been allegations against many apparel exporters of misusing the bonded warehouse facility through tempering the UDs issued manually and allegations of corruption against BGMEA officials in issuing the UDs.
Against the setting of the allegations, the trade overall body took the initiative to automate the issuance of UDs to its member factories.
The BGMEA on Sunday issued a circular informing its members that the web submission process of UD applications, including those related to corrections and costs submission, would start on January 16.
‘The BGMEA won't accept any manual submission of UDs from the date,’ it said.
The circular said that the trade body had already trained representatives of factories on online submission of UDs.
‘The idea behind the UD automation is to get more efficiency and transparency. Commercial staff of the factories won't have to come quickly to the BGMEA business office as e-signature is effective for the online UD submission,’ BGMEA president Rubana Huq told New Age.
Rubana said that the BGMEA started the UD automation process in 2015 but submissions could not be achieved online then.
‘The incumbent board in 2020 took the initiative first for online UD submission and today the system has been fully digitalised,’ she said.
She said that a transparent digital UD automation program would also help to have the industry to another level.
In line with the BGMEA options, the trade human body processes typically 1,000 applications designed for UDs each day and is now providing the program manually which involves a whole lot of paper operate and physical activities to guarantee the service is given properly.
Beneath the automated service program, the RMG exporters can task UDs through uploading relevant documents from anywhere and people can pay the service charges through a reliable online payment system, BGMEA officials said.
They said that the implementation of the automated system would help the BGMEA to make the process paperless while the system would automatically calculate the consumption amount through artificial intelligence.
Generally, authorities agencies issue UDs to the exporters across the world but in Bangladesh, the federal government has charged the BGMEA and the Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association with the issuance of the certificate with their members.
The trade bodies issue UDs to their members for the stated raw materials for import storage and export of ready garments as per the master letter of credit or contract.
The automation of UD issuance would expedite the exportimport process and also check forgery of records and abuse of duty-free import facility by the exporters, people in the sector said.