President of Russia Vladimir Putin: Mr Bulavin, today is a holiday, Customs Officers’ Day. I would like to congratulate you and the staff of Russia’s Customs Service on your professional holiday and to wish you success, good luck, good health and high spirits.
Let us talk today about several things. The first and most important is transfers to the federal budget. Second, what transformations you consider the most important now and what is on the agenda.
But one of the most important questions is how the creation of a single mechanism for fiscal payment administration is proceeding.
Head of the Federal Customs Service Vladimir Bulavin: Mr President, thank you for congratulating Russian customs officers. We constantly feel your support and will not let you down.
According to the results of work in the first nine months of this year, it can be reported that we have managed to fulfil the task of transferring funds to the federal budget.
In the first nine months, 4 trillion 55 billion rubles have been transferred. This is 31 percent or one trillion rubles more than last year. Of course, the growth of oil prices has played a role here, as well as the macroeconomic situation, the increase in the weight characteristics of imports, and the rise in the average customs value. Therefore, as head of the Federal Customs Service, I can report to you that this testifies to a certain extent to the effectiveness of the work of the customs authorities.
We face difficult tasks before the end of the year: we must meet the forecast target of 5 trillion 930 billion rubles. This means that we have to collect about 20 billion daily. The job is difficult, strenuous, but we will make every effort to do it.
The current state of the customs service and its further development is directly related to the introduction of digital technologies and the development of telecommunication systems and information resources.
At present– here is my presentation – the information system of the customs agencies includes 81 programming tools and 67 information resources.
Every day, 30 million various messages and records are processed in a single automated information network. We have the ability to automatically maintain information contacts with 32 departments and automatically generate requests for them, and they, of course, make requests for our information resources in the same way. Suffice it to say that during the year we have generated 17.5 million requests for information resources of other federal authorities. This allowed us to accomplish the task you set on concentrating electronic declaration.
In 2018, we are to create three electronic customs and three electronic declaration centres. I must report to you that yesterday at the international customs forum, the first e-customs office in Nizhny Novgorod of the Volga Federal District was launched.
In 2020, we will have eight e-customs offices located in federal districts and eight electronic declaration centres: three marine electronic declaration centres, one aviation, one energy, one excise, and electronic declaration centres of the Moscow Region and Kaliningrad Region customs services.
What benefits will it have? Up to now, we have had 672 customs clearance points – but now there will be 16. There is a fundamental point: if, as a rule, these 672 customs clearance centres were located on privately owned premises, the 16 electronic declaration centres will be located in state-owned facilities. This significantly increases the level of manageability and the efficiency of handling customs payments, reduces the administrative burden on business, and most importantly, we disclose the personal contact between the issuing inspector and customs applicant and significantly reduce corruption risks.
This year we did a lot to simplify the customs clearance procedure and make it faster in order to meet businesses’ expectations. There is a special section in our comprehensive programme to develop the Federal Customs Service until 2020 that is entitled Ten Steps Towards Facilitating Business. We have already taken these steps.
Suffice it to say that this year our automated system registered 1.5 million electronic customs declarations and cleared 250,000 of them, that is, without the involvement of a customs officer. We plan that by 2020 the automated system will be able to register 99 percent of all customs declarations and clear 80 percent of all customs declarations for risk-free shipments. The average registration time for one customs declaration is three minutes, and the average clearance time is five minutes. I believe this is quite fast, taking into account the total amount of customs declarations we have to handle.
We also worked hard on expanding the range of My Account services we provide to those who are involved in foreign trade. Currently, exporters and importers while on holiday, at the office or at home can file a customs declaration in electronic form, consult customs officers about issues that might arise, submit accompanying documents in electronic form, archive these documents, if necessary, and check their current account balance or the amount debited from the account. There are quite a few new services we have presented, and we plan to further expand the range of these services.
It took us two years to introduce, practically from scratch, the electronic clearance system for transit shipments going through our country and, as of October 1 of this year, 99.7 percent of all transit customs declarations are processed electronically.
Mr President, you know we had a problem with tracking transit shipments through our country, as it was often the case that goods remained in the Russian Federation while relevant documents were registered as they should in a neighbouring country.
Vladimir Putin: These are member countries of our Union.
Vladimir Bulavin: Yes, they are.
There is a pilot project underway for a month now to track transit shipments through our country. We make sure that vehicles have hinged seals that allow us to track the trajectory of a moving vehicle and see to it that it follows the designated route.
Our colleagues from Kazakhstan have joined the pilot project, and we have also reached relevant agreements with our Belarusian colleagues, as well as our other colleagues in the Customs Union. In general, the pilot project has been showing good results.
Vladimir Putin: Very good, this will also safeguard their interests.
Vladimir Bulavin: Yes, of course.
Vladimir Putin: Good, thank you.