Newdelhi:8/7/23:India continues to demonstrate its commitment to digital and sustainable trade facilitation, as evidenced by its outstanding performance in the recently released United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia Paciﬁc’s (UNESCAP) Global Survey on Digital and Sustainable Trade Facilitation. The 2023 survey, covering more than 140 economies and evaluating 60 trade facilitation measures, has positioned India at the forefront of global trade facilitation eﬀorts, with an impressive score of 93.55% in 2023 vis a vis 90.32% in 2021.
The 2023 Survey has recognized India’s exceptional progress across various sub indicators, with the country achieving a perfect score of 100% in four key areas: Transparency, Formalities, Institutional Arrangement and Cooperation, and Paperless Trade. These remarkable scores are a testament to India’s relentless eﬀorts in streamlining trade processes, enhancing transparency, and promoting cooperation among stakeholders through initiative such as Turant Customs, Single Window Interface for Facilitation of Trade (SWIFT), Pre-Arrival data processing, e- Sanchit, Coordinated Border Management etc. India has witnessed a substantial improvement in the score for “Women in Trade Facilitation” component from 66.7% in 2021 to 77.8% in 2023 thereby indicating commitment to gender inclusivity and the empowerment of women in the trade sector.
India is now the best performing country amongst all the countries of South Asia region. The overall score of India has been greater than many developed countries including Canada, France, UK, Germany etc.
As evidenced in the following graph, India’s overall score has continued to improve year by year indicating strong commitment to further enhancing ease of Doing Business by undertaking next generational Trade Facilitation measures.
The Global Survey on Digital and Sustainable Trade Facilitation conducted by UNESCAP covers WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) along with set of nearly 60 trade facilitation measures categorized into eleven sub-groups, namely: Transparency; Formalities; Institutional arrangement and cooperation; Transit facilitation; Paperless trade; Cross-border paperless trade; Trade facilitation for SMEs; Agricultural trade facilitation; Women in trade facilitation; Trade ﬁnance for trade facilitation; and Trade facilitation in times of crisis. The survey is fact-based rather than perception-based. A three-step approach to data collection and validation is generally followed, implemented over 6-month period every 2 years.
The Survey reflects the efficacy of Trade facilitation measures taken by Indian Customs such as Turant Customs comprising of Faceless Customs, Paperless Customs and Contact less Customs, in enhancing India’s ease of doing Business and promote trade facilitative environment in the country.