27.11.2020, 11:17

“Key” for reform of model of quality control and food safety inspection

“Key” for reform of model of quality control and food safety inspection
Inspecting imported goods at Giang Thanh Border Gate-Kien Giang province. Photo: D.N

Technology will help information transparency

Pham Thi Ngoc Thuy, Permanent Deputy Director of the Office of the Private Economic Development Research Board, said that the business community has agreed with solutions on reforming specialised inspection from the first day of approaching the idea to the detailed discussions. 99% of businesses said if the Government determines to implement solutions on reforming specialised inspection, it will be a revolution in import and export activities.

Talking in more detail about the reform in the scheme, Do Thu Thuy Director of Korchem Co., Ltd said IT application will be a key solution to implement the model on quality control and food safety inspection for imported goods. Because the Customs has information data sources of all import-export enterprises, it is an important source the Customs can use for risk analysis and assessment for inspection classification.

“The determination of inspection level based on automatically information analysis of the system will help information transparent, cut down on items subject to inspection,” said Thuy.

The IT application to deploy the new model is the 7th reform content in the draft scheme reforming the model of quality control and foods safety inspection for imported goods. According to the Ministry of Finance, State management agencies are currently using the National Single Window to perform procedures related to licensing, quarantine, quality control and food safety inspection for import, export and transit goods.

On the customs side, the automated clearance system and core IT system were launched in 2014 for all customs departments across the country. Currently, 99% of customs declarations have been processed and gone through customs clearance on the Customs IT system.

Thus, management for import, export and transit goods including the specialised inspection by State management agencies has been implemented automatically and electronically. This is an important premise to create a foundation in terms of information, data, electronic dossiers as well as a tool to transfer from the old model to the new model. However, information is not currently linked to ensure the continuity and consistency and is shared in a fragmentary, untimely, or sometimes incomplete manner.

Therefore, transparency on importers’ quality control and promotion of IT application will encourage businesses to comply with the law on quality control and help firms understand information on quality control for imported goods, so that they can be proactive in their import activities. The consumer will be provided sufficient information on quality control for imported goods to ensure consumption of quality products and goods, and coordinate with agencies to supervise these goods during circulating in the market, monitor import activities of businesses. For the management agency, the information about the quality of imported goods serves the organisation and direction of State management activities on product and goods quality according to assigned fields.

Ensure management

The Ministry of Finance assessed the transition from the old model to the new model will have many advantages. The management agencies may take advantage of the functions on receiving e-dossiers on the National Single Window and database of more than 3 million dossiers of more than 38,000 enterprises that have carried out procedures on the National Single Window from 2014 to present for analysis and assessment of risks for for specialised inspection classification.

However, the National Single Window and the automated clearance system need to be upgraded to add new features, such as assisting businesses in determining whether goods are subject to specialised inspection; assisting businesses in publishing standards that their products must meet; connecting and sharing records and data for stakeholders (including customs clearance data); specialised inspection classification in combination with customs inspection classification; providing instructions for businesses to perform all stages of specialised inspection in combination with customs inspection; sampling, sample delivery and management.

According to the Ministry of Finance, to carry out the scheme, the information technology system must be upgraded and have a number of functions added to meet the requirements of automatic determination of goods subject to or not subject to exemption from inspection; subject or not subject to reduced/normal inspection based on inspection principles in legal documents.

The system can connect and share information among State management agencies for import activities, with basic information including quality inspection records, food safety inspection; customs declaration; results of conformity assessment; examination results of inspection agencies; the list of goods subject to quality control and food safety inspection and information related to violations of businesses in the post-clearance audit.

The system also meets requirements of publicity and transparency of information on the quality of goods such as the list of goods subject to quality control and food safety inspection; results of quality control, food safety inspection; goods subject to exempt from inspection; list of goods subject to reduced inspection/normal inspection, identifying goods that are not eligible for normal inspection/reduced inspection, but are subject to strict inspection. The system may integrate the automated customs clearance system with the National Single Window.

By Ngoc Linh/Ngoc Loan