Digital Gwadar Port Hurtles Towards the 21st Century

Gwadar Sea Port went fully digital, as installation of the fibre optic cable network was completed and became operational. The start of this phase of high tech E-Customs at Gwadar means more efficient trade and trans-shipment on commercialised container movement.

Based on information received from Gwadar Pro, the new and simpler paperless custom processes has become completely operational with the installation of the fibre optic cable. This activity resulted in a reforming of the Gwadar Port into a thriving hub of international and regional trade to places like Afghanistan, China and Central Asia regions.

A senior official of GDA said that “Installation of fibre optic cable has equipped Gwadar Port with high-tech web-based one customs (WeBOC) system of goods declaration and clearance”.

The official commented further stating that this new development would play a substantial role in expediting the work of customs officers, traders and agents. He said, “It would make processes simpler, GD clearance system faster and container tracking easier”.

The primary features of the web-based one customs paperless system such as online payments and online manifest filing, online communication with clearing agents and traders, round the clock web-based GD filing, communication with port authorities via EDI and Risk Management Systems.

It was also stated that the PTCL (Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited) was in charge of completing the installation of the new 820-kilometre-long fibre optic cable project.

Naseer Khan Kashani, the chairman of the GPA (Gwadar Port Authority) said that web-based One Customs (WeBOC) was a domestically created, web-based computerized clearance procedure issuing a start to finish automated customs clearance of export and import goods.

Naseer Khan Kashani said that “The system was developed jointly by the Pakistan Customs and PRAL, and was first implemented on a trial basis at Port Muhammad Bin Qasim. Subsequently, WeBOC was further rolled out at other terminals and customs stations”.

Currently, web-based one customs has over forty-five thousand registered users such as businesses and government departments. Such as the State Bank of Pakistan, Commercial Banks, Anti-Narcotic Force, Provincial Motor Registering Authorities, Ministry of Climate Change, Income Tax Department, Engineering Development Board, Railways etc.

Abdul Zahir Achakzai, the Executive Vice President of PTCL (Pakistan Telecommunication Company Limited) referred to the development of fibre optic cable as a major step forward for Gwadar, Pakistan’s future city.

The commercial route of the China–Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) runs from Gwadar to Western China. The project now worth over sixty billion dollars, needs modern high speed internet connectivity to smoothly carry out its extensive operations. The fibre optic cable is a major step towards achieving this commercial necessity.

Executive Vice President Abdul Zahir Achakzai also stated that PTCL had taken numerous steps to boost internet connectivity in industrial areas as it recognized the vital role of communication infrastructure.

E-Custom controlled by web-based one customs including Manufacturing Bonds, various modules to handle important Commercial Transit cargo for Afghanistan. There are also Warehousing modules to handle Break-bulk, Goods Declaration, Reverse Transit and Clearances from Border Customs Stations. All these systems are meant to assist with the moving and storing of container import and exports throughout the port.

Marc Russell Benioff, CEO of Salesforce, once said, “Speed is the new currency of business”. A tech innovation like the digitization of the operations in the Gwadar port is a significant drive to increased productivity, this project will go a long way to creating more investment opportunities and facilitate fast & fluid trading in Gwadar port.

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