The International Financial Corporation (IFC) of the World Bank Group signed an advisory agreement with the Ministry of Finance on the 12th May 2015 at the Ministry of Finance’s Training Centre. The Agreement was signed by Ms. Norberta Soares, Director General of Corporate Service and Ms. Melissa Day, Resident Representative. Both represented the Ministry and the World Bank respectively.
The Agreement continues the ongoing support that the IFC has been providing to the DG Customs. This will contribute towards the improvement of revenue collection, detection of illicit goods crossing the borders and build greater community trust in the public service. This ties in well with one of the Government’s priorities to continue with the reform of the tax system to improve the financial balance of the country and to collect greater domestic revenue.
The Agreement will provide significant benefits in terms of the development of a new Customs Consolidated Procedures Code, a new Customs harmonized tariff, a simplified business model to reduce duplication and to provide centralized services and an improved intelligence analysis skills of the Customs’ staff.
Ms. Melissa stated that Customs reform is “a private sector priority” and the Agreement will contribute to “an effective Customs administration”, which will “distinguish Timor-Leste from other countries, improve its competitiveness, reduce costs of incoming goods” and set Timor-Leste as “an attractive place for investment”. All of this will ultimately “benefit the people of Timor-Leste”.