Dec 3, 2013

e-BRC project wins 2013 eASIA award

I had blogged about the revolutionary trade facilitation measure 'electronic-Bank Realization Certificate' (e-BRC) here.  E-BRC was just launched by Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) at that time. It has been more than a year now and it has revolutionzed the way the bank realizations are filed in India.

Recognizing this, the Asia Pacific Council for Trade Facilitation and Electronic Business (AFACT), which awards eASIA awards, chose eBRC project of India for the award under the category 'trade facilitation'. The award under this category is given for

1) Improve the balance among governmental legislation,
2) Enhance international trade and eBusiness,
3) Increase information visibility, by evaluating the concrete effects on trade regulatory and facilitating agencies control and security, tax-related efficiency, trade promotion, and business efficiency,
4) Adopt a leading model in terms of simplification in trade procedures, single entry point,
5) Implement innovative application of UN/CEFACT standards and recommendations, and have promoted service performance, and
6) Successfully enable bilateral or multi-lateral international cooperation.
The e-BRC project has done well during last year and deserves the award. The official press report on e-BRC award reads thus:

e-BRC project enables banks to upload Foreign Exchange realisation information relating to merchandise goods exports on to the DGFT server under a secured protocol. So far 89 banks operating in India, including foreign banks and cooperative banks have uploaded more than 64 lakh e-BRCs on to the DGFT server. This initiative has reduced the cost of transaction for exporters by eliminating their interface with bank (for issuance of BRC purposes) and enhanced the productivity of banks and DGFT. At the state level, Commercial Tax Departments of Maharashtra, Delhi, Odisha, Andhra Pradesh and Chhattisgarh have signed MoU with DGFT for receiving e-BRC data for VAT refund purposes. Many other states are in the process of signing MOUs. e-BRC project is a success story involving multiple stake holders, each with a different technology platform. This project is a live example of power of Business Process Reengineering (BPR) to improve service delivery. 
Way to go. As I said in the earlier blog, BRCs are just one small step for the trade, but this measure of going electronic, is a big leap in terms of trade-facilitation.