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MIL OSI Translation. Region: Russian Federation –

– In five months. Why do we suppose? Because we have statistical reporting on declarations, and there is also statistical reporting on mutual trade in the Eurasian Economic Union. They come to us with a certain delay. But nevertheless, we can say that the trade turnover increased by almost 18% and reached about $ 253 billion.

– Is this a turnover? Are there any exports or imports?

– This is trade. Both exports and imports are showing growth. Exports – at the level of 12.2%, imports – by 25.8%. We feel this in payments as well. The forecast target for this year was set at 5 trillion rubles. Based on the results of our work for five months of this year, we have already transferred 2 trillion 400 billion rubles. And the forecast task was fulfilled by 128%, 654 billion rubles were additionally transferred to the state treasury. Main payments: 1 trillion 700 billion rubles is an import component, 690 billion rubles is an export component. This dynamics, in our opinion, will continue. We have no doubts that we will fulfill the forecast task for the year. Although we do not exclude certain adjustments, these are already forecast assignments, and we are ready for them.

– That is, to increase. You live too well! See, another such important factor. It’s not just about trade, but the change that everyone is celebrating is the digitalization of all areas of our life. How did this affect your area? And in principle, you always went to this. Was the pandemic an additional impetus or was that how you moved?

– I would not argue that all the processes associated with the pandemic directly affected the digitalization of the customs sphere. We have fulfilled all our plans in this area. At the end of 2020, we completed the creation of electronic declaration centers, electronic customs.

– As planned. Now we have the entire declaration array, 99%, even a little more, is drawn up in the electronic declaration centers. This allowed us to automate this process. Over the five months of this year, 2 million 70 thousand declarations have been issued. 540 thousand declarations were processed automatically. That is, without human participation, the information system itself made decisions on their release. It turns out that every fourth declaration submitted by our business this year was drawn up automatically. The average time for registering and issuing such declarations today does not exceed five minutes. We consider this a definite achievement in the customs sphere. But, of course, we will not dwell on this.

Last year, we adopted the Strategy for the Development of the Customs Service until 2030, and approved a detailed plan for its implementation at the end of the year. And our main goal is to create the customs of the future by 2030. We see it as smarter, more flexible, quickly customizable.

– Will the customs officers stay there or not?

– The customs officers will stay. Most importantly, digital technologies should connect customs administrations with business, with partners abroad, with partners within the country, and customs administrations of different countries. That is, the customs sphere should be saturated to a greater extent with numbers, and the higher the saturation level, the more transparent the customs sphere, the fewer questions left to each other, the more trust.

In general, if we assess the trajectory of the development of customs in the Russian Federation, then this is a movement from electronic customs to intellectual customs. We plan to “enroll” artificial intelligence in the customs service, and there are even such projects. For example, the creation of a digital analysis system, images of inspection and inspection complexes. Have you ever seen this image? In order to analyze this picture, to make an exceptionally correct decision on it, you need to serve in the customs authorities for more than a dozen years. At first glance, a person will not even immediately understand what it is. We will create an information system that will be self-learning, will read these images, recognize what the customs authority, customs officers need, and ultimately make a decision. We have certain developments.

One of the main projects is also the creation of an intelligent checkpoint. The digital platform should unite all control and inspection departments working at the checkpoint. This will mean non-stop movement of goods and vehicles at checkpoints. Provided that no customs or other risks arise.

One of the most significant projects for us is the construction of a data center. How do our information systems differ from other systems or other federal executive bodies? Our information system is required to operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week, for a full month, and any failure in information systems will result in no product being released. And if this product is perishable, the temperature is high outside? We issue about 25 thousand declarations a day, that is, more than a thousand declarations per hour. If some kind of failure occurs, it means that this or that resource is idle for an hour, which means that thousands of declarations have not been issued. And this is a thousand trucks, trucks. More than 860 million records are recorded in our information systems every day.

– It’s even hard for me to imagine such a thing.

– Therefore, the main task for us is to ensure that our information resource is reliable, works quickly, there are no failures in its work, then we will be able to provide fast processing of customs declarations for business and quality control, also based on digital technologies, from the point of view of ensuring the economic security of the country.

– Tell me, are the Data Processing Center and the Operational Monitoring and Analysis Center two different centers?

– These are different things.

– Here. And how do they correlate with each other? What does one do and what does the other do?

– The data processing center is an integral and most important part of information systems. The Center for Operational Monitoring and Analysis is an integral part of our customs technological process, from the point of view of monitoring the situation in the country and from the point of view of exercising control functions and making management decisions as a result of responding to analysis. Therefore, over the past two or three years, we have centralized all our resources. And the time has come to create a digital picture of the day of the week, train the systems to identify parameters that go beyond the established norms, identify these cases and make decisions on them. We are on our way to establishing this center and will launch it in September. The first stage is large-scale changes, recruiting and defining the functionality, creating the organizational structure of this center. We need to amend some of the presidential decrees that regulate this activity. But I think that by September we will have time to do all this.

– Will exporters themselves feel its appearance? Will something change for them?

– For them, our estimates will change. In customs clearance, there is already a fairly high degree of uniformity in decision-making, but it will be even higher. Plus, we will have a risk management system in this center. This year we launched research work to develop approaches to a new risk management system. If you know, now this system is based on the categorization of participants in foreign economic activity. That is, we see the history of the behavior of one or another foreign trade participant, then we categorize it depending on the conscientiousness and, one might say, distribute the companies by sectors with varying degrees of preferences. We believe that this is not very fair in relation to participants in foreign economic activity. Relatively speaking, a participant in the green sector can commit some violations too, while a participant in our sector with medium risks can deliver certain goods without violating customs legislation. Therefore, we will proceed to the online assessment of each consignment.

– That is, there will be no categorization for the participants themselves?

– This means that there will be no categorization as such, but some coefficients will remain that will directly depend on the conscientiousness of the participants in foreign economic activity in this integrator, which will determine which party we assign to which sector. The only thing is that these criteria will not be dominant.

– And this will also be in September?

– Not. We have launched a research project, we will see what will happen at the exit. Then we’ll start the experiment. The work is very responsible for us, because the risk management system is our only control tool, moreover, an instrument based on legally significant decisions that we make.

– Interesting to see. Tell me, and the national traceability system – at what stage is it now? What are your plans?

– The Federal Tax Service is the administrator of the national traceability system. Our participation consists in loading our declaration array into the information systems of the Federal Tax Service. We ran an experiment and it all works. It is about documentary traceability. No additional documents are needed, just those documents that a particular business provides to the Federal Tax Service in order to trace the chain of resale and the final release of goods through the cash register equipment of trading networks. There is no need for labeling, no reading of this label, no additional burden on the business. We, of course, would like to complete this system for ourselves in terms of creating reverse circuits: to compare the parameters by which we released the product with the parameters by which it was sold through retail chains.

If we have released this or that consignment as a product of Chinese origin, then it should be sold there as a product of Chinese origin, and not of European origin at an inflated cost. But we will continue to implement these plans.

– I just wanted to say that this is the essence, in order to trace the goods from the manufacturer, wherever it is, to me, the final buyer. That is, so that I could understand where it was produced, why …

– And so that we can create an idea, deceived us or did not deceive us when releasing goods into trade.

– When do you think this system will start working?

– From July 1, the system will work. The corresponding changes have been made to the tax legislation. Systems are mutually tuned. There are also no problems with loading our information into the information systems of the Federal Tax Service. Therefore, I think this year we will already gain the first experience in such a regular mode.

– And what kind of goods can we talk about?

– We are talking about budget-intensive goods on which it will be possible to test the operation of this system. For example, baby carriages, metal furniture.

– But will it continue to expand in the future?

– Of course, expand. So far, there is a principle of voluntariness to participate.

– Is it okay with that?

– All experiments were carried out, we did not have any serious failures. And I think it won’t.

– I wanted to ask a question a little wider. We started with digitalization in customs clearance. But, in principle, digitalization also affected trade as such. The popularity of marketplaces through which Russians buy goods has increased. And this applies to both individuals and legal entities.

– Do you mean online trading?

– Yes, that’s right. How did this affect you?

– You know that since January 1, 2020, we have lowered the thresholds for duty-free import of parcels from foreign stores, set 200 euros, without the frequency of purchase. 2020 is probably not such an indicative year, due to understandable circumstances, to build some kind of analysis on it, but nevertheless, the number of paid parcels in our country has doubled and the number of payments has also doubled. In 2019, we had about 800 million rubles, in 2020 – 1 billion 700 thousand.

– Is it only from online trading?

– Yes, from online trading. But it must be said that due to understandable circumstances, such as a decrease in air traffic (all electronic commerce is moved by air transport), the number of parcels has generally decreased. That is, there were about 340 million shipments, and there were 230 million in 2020. But, I repeat, the number of paid items and the number of payments has increased. Now the goods of e-commerce are equated in status with goods for personal use. That is, if you bought something abroad within a certain amount and are taking it with you, no one checks anything, this is your right. But you assume all possible costs and risks. Therefore, at the EAEU site, we are working on the issues of separating online trade goods into an independent type of goods, which are issued under a separate declaration (and we are developing this declaration). In fact, a new customs clearance procedure for these goods is being built. The question of creating bonded warehouses was actively studied. You know when goods for one or another read-out nomenclature are in demand and are imported into the country without customs clearance, are stored, but released, and the clearance takes place upon release. So far we have no such experience.

– Are you working on these issues with Russian Post?

– Yes, with Russian Post.

– Now all this is very simple and understandable. Relatively speaking, I order something expensive on AliExpress and do not worry about it anymore, the goods come to me already with the payment of all customs payments. What are you now discussing, will it also be changes in customs clearance, allocation into a separate category? Or will I have to fill out a customs declaration yet?

– No, the procedure has already been worked out when an international postal invoice is enough for the goods to be released. We have worked out this procedure. The whole question is whether there will be zeroing of the duty-free threshold for parcels from foreign stores or not. In some European countries, it is possible. At first, it was the same as ours, thresholds of 200 euros were set, then 100, 20, 0. But life will show.

– In general, what are your current plans for the threshold specifically for the Internet?

– These are not customs plans.

– Well, the EAEU.

– There is no consensus on this matter in the EAEU yet.

– And there will be no revision for personal goods, do I understand correctly?

– Not yet.

– So this threshold remains?

– Yes.

– Thank you very much.


EDITOR’S NOTE: This article is a translation. Apologies should the grammar and / or sentence structure not be perfect.

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