Following complaints about the newly implemented Bahamas Electronic Single Window (BESW), also known as Click2Clear, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Finance Peter Turnquest yesterday admitted there are still a few kinks to iron out with the new Customs Department system.
In fact, since the system was rolled out in October, importers and brokers have lamented that it is doing the exact opposite of improving the speed and ease of clearing the Customs Department as it was intended to do.
Turnquest admitted there have been challenges.
“Click2Clear is really a bit of challenge for us, I think more so from a perception than a reality in a lot of circumstances, because the fact of the matter is that it is a new program and there is a steep learning curve – a little steeper than we had anticipated. I think we would admit that, but we’re doing our best to try and support all of the brokers, support all of the importers to get up and going to work out the bugs and bottlenecks maybe as quickly as possible,” he told reporters outside of the Churchill Building yesterday.
“We acknowledge the challenges, we recognize that on our side of the fence there are some issues that we have had to work through, as well as working with the importers and the brokers on their side to adapt their systems, such that they can take advantage of the technology that is provided by the Click2Clear platform.”
BESW was implemented to facilitate one access point for traders and businesses that is connected to various government agencies.
The $9 million BESW was created through a loan from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB). It promises to make the customs process paperless, speedier and more efficient.
The Bahamas is one of three countries to implement a single window system, which is in preparation for its accession to the World Trade Organization.