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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - RIYADH — The Saudi Customs and the Customs of Bahrain signed an agreement of mutual recognition of Authorized Economic Operator Program (AEO) here, which aims to enhance the security of the supply chain and enhance the advantages of trade facilitation offered by the AEO for the facilities approved in the program.
The agreement was signed on the Saudi Customs side by Governor of the General Customs Authority Ahmed Bin Abdulaziz Al-Haqbani and on the Bahraini Customs side by Sheikh Ahmed Bin Hamad Al Khalifa, president of Customs in the Kingdom of Bahrain.
Al-Haqbani said on this occasion that the signing of this agreement reinforces the historical relations between the two countries' customs, which is witnessing a remarkable development in all areas of customs work, noting that this agreement comes as an extension of the fields of cooperation and joint work between the Kingdom and Bahrain.
Al-Haqbani pointed out that the agreement embodies the existing economic cooperation and integration between the two countries, stressing that one of the most important goals achieved by the mutual recognition agreement is to enhance intra-trade and raise the level of trade exchange and overcome obstacles that limit the flexibility of trade exchange, in addition to strengthening and consolidating the principle of partnership between customs and the private sector.
He stressed that the agreement will contribute, God willing, to the growth of the volume of trade exchange and support the economy of the two countries, and will have a clear positive impact during the next stage towards facilitating trade.
The agreement includes exchanging the concessions provided to the economic operators accredited in the customs of the two countries, and seeking to find measures to facilitate trade for the economic operators in terms of speeding up the process of clearing goods, in cooperation with the relevant government agencies.
Undersecretary of the General Authority of Customs for Trade Facilitation, Eng. Abdul Rahman Al-Thakir, explained that mutual recognition agreements are one of the most important advantages of the approved economic operator program that is based on the concept of partnership between customs and the private sector by providing customs the advantages of facilitating trade to accredited commercial establishments.
In addition, the agreement would provide several benefits to companies accredited to the program, and would also contribute to enhancing international trade facilitation through more flexible customs operations and greater predictability of the security and safety of the international supply chain.
Also, mutual recognition agreements come as an important means for countries to work together formally to obtain significant benefits for the private sector and customs departments alike, as the commercial establishment accredited in the economic operator program in one of the two countries obtains advantages similar to those obtained by the commercial establishment in the partner country.
The Framework Agreement for International Trade Security and Facilitation Standards urges working together to use the approved economic operator programs to enhance the advantages of trade facilitation by stopping or reducing excess or repeated efforts in customs work. — SG
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