China has slashed the average time for customs clearance by over half in 2018, far surpassing the government’s previous goal to cut the average time by one third, according to Ni Yuefeng, head of the General Administration of Customs.
“The robust growth of China’s booming cross-border e-commerce has posed challenges to customs supervision,” Ni said on March 5, during an interview from the sidelines of the two sessions.
In 2018, the total volume of retail import and export commodities through the customs cross-border e-commerce management platform surged by 50 percent to 134.7 billion yuan ($20 billion), according to the General Administration of Customs.
On Nov 11 last year, the Singles Day online shopping festival, Chinese customs processed more than 27 million cross-border e-commerce orders, Ni added.
To meet the new challenges, Chinese customs used the artificial intelligence technologies to help ease the clearance procedures.
“In the next step, we will strengthen the supervision and improve the services,” Ni said.
“We will also further crack down on smuggling, especially the supervision over the imported solid waste.”
Ni called for joint actions between different countries to deal with the imported solid waste, or the overseas garbage.
“If we all join hands together, it may not be an issue that bothers us.” Ni said.