1.1. Bhutan acceded to the Revised Kyoto Convention 15 September 2014, as the ninety-eighth contracting party. The technical assistance is supporting implementation of the General Annex of the RKC. Training was delivered on implementation of specific modules of the RKC delivered 9-13 June 2014 in Thimphu, Bhutan for the Department of Revenue and Customs (DRC), together with external stakeholders for sensitization purposes. Further, a nation-wide series of RKC awareness-raising workshops and consultations with all stakeholders was successfully conducted by the Department of Revenue and Customs during October and November 2014.
1.2. A Regulatory Impact Assessment Report (based upon amendments made to Bhutan's Customs Act and Rule) has been certified by the Department of Revenue and Customs.
1.3. Comprehensive consultations with public and private sector stakeholders have been held on the proposed amended Customs Act and Rule (October 2014).
1.4. An international Customs modernization expert is being financed through the TA to support DRC in drafting and finalizing the Rules and regulations during June-Oct 2015.
1.5. A Consultation Workshop on the Rules and Regulations will be held (September 2015) to familiarize all affected at-border and behind-the-border agencies and departments.
1.6. To support implementation of the provisions of the RKC, DRC conducted a National Experts' Workshop on Customs Valuation in Paro, Bhutan (June 2015), focusing on development of Customs valuation Standard Operating Procedures manual. The Workshop was guided by expertise form the WCO/ROCB A/P, and funded by the TA.
2.1. User Acceptance Testing of the Customs module within RAMIS continued through the final quarter of 2014, and necessary adjustments made.
2.2. Schedule of roll out of all Customs sub-modules of RAMIS for 2015 has been agreed.
2.3. RAMIS technical developer has conducted week-long user acceptance test and training of trainers on use of priority 1 module (25 May-01 June 2015), focusing on sub-components of import India and export, for 32 participants from DRC, in Thimphu, Bhutan. Onward training to 262 Customs officers will follow from this training in June 2015.
2.4. RAMIS developer conducted a 10-day user acceptance test and training of trainers on use of priority 2 module (17-26 August), focusing on third-country import, and export (including post parcel, courier, passenger terminal, air cargo, and others) for 34 participants from DRC, in Thimphu, Bhutan. Onward training to 262 Customs officers will follow from this training during September 2015.
3.1. Support rendered to Bhutan's National Trade Facilitation Committee (NTFC) in strategic planning, and logistical convening of first five General Meetings of the Committee (January, May, September, and October 2014, and May 2015).
3.2. The TA is financing capacity-building activities for the NTFC, including development of a trade information portal, hosted by Bhutan's Department of Trade, and coordinated through the NTFC.
3.3. Bhutan's NTFC was expanded in August 2015, by Executive Order of the Ministry of Finance, to become the National Trade Facilitation and Transport Committee (NTTFC), to accommodate the requirement for a National Transport Facilitation Committee, under the provisions of the recently signed Bangladesh-Bhutan-India-Nepal Motor Vehicle Agreement.
3.4. The NTTFC Secretariat established its first Working Group committee and will conduct an orientation for the Working group in September 2015.
3.5. Under the auspices of the NTTFC, the Department of Trade (DoT) is conducting a feasibility study for development of an effective and dynamic trade information portal (TIP) in Bhutan. A team of international and national consultants will be fielded in October to work with the NTTFC Secretariat, DoT, DRC and other relevant border agencies and develop options and scenarios for a TIP, supported by the TA.