Queues to be a thing of past at border

Queues to be a thing of past at border

The days of long queues at border crossings are soon to be a thing of the past thanks to new facilities which have been approved by the National Transport Authority (NTA).

Motorists, truck operators and overseas travellers will no longer have to worry about long and laborious customs procedures after a landmark agreement was signed on Tuesday by the National Transport Authority and the Automobile and Touring Club of the UAE (ATCUAE). The move was made in a bid to simplify and speed up procedures, in line with the Federal Law No. 9/2011 on Land Transport.

Shaikh Hamdan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan and Dr Mohammed bin Sulayem after signing the agreement. — Supplied photo

As per the accord, the ATCUAE has become legally authorised to issue Carnet de Passage en Douane (CPDs) or “trip tickets” for motorists, as well as TIR Carnets (a customs transit document), the international equivalent for truck operators, and International Driving Permits (IDPs).

In recent years, many UAE travellers carrying unofficial CPDs have been refused entry to countries like Jordan, Lebanon, Syria and Egypt.

Similarly, unofficial international driving licences have created major problems for those driving rental cars or private vehicles abroad, with their insurance deemed invalid in the event of accidents.

According to a senior official, once activated, the TIR system will reduce transport costs by minimising formalities and delays through the use of standardised and reduced controls and simplified documentation.

Shaikh Hamdan bin Mubarak Al Nahyan, Minister of Public Works and Chairman of the National Transport Authority, said the agreement allows the NTA to work closer together with the ATCUAE, which is the first authority to be licenced under the law.

Talking about the new procedures he said: “The CPDs simplify customs formalities for motoring tourists when presented along with a Certificate of Tourism which allows a vehicle to be driven across borders to destinations beyond the GCC.” ATCUAE President Dr Mohammed bin Sulayem said the ATCUAE has been a supplier of legitimate CPDs and IDPs since 1965 and has been, for several years, working in conjunction with the National Transport Authority (NTA) and other government authorities to counter the presence in the market of unofficial versions.

“The new agreement extends to the issuing of TIR (International Road Transport) Carnets on behalf of the International Road Transport Union (IRU), which looks after the interests of bus, coach, taxi and truck operators.”

Adding, he said as the only global customs transit system in existence, the TIR System offers transport operators and customs authorities a simple, flexible, cost-effective and secure system for the international transport of goods across frontiers.

“The ATCUAE expects to introduce the TIR system in the country soon with 68 countries linked worldwide, and its introduction in the UAE, which annually sends 700,000 trucks across its border into Saudi Arabia, will be welcomed by the transport industry, by a multitude of goods manufacturers and suppliers, by customers, as well as customs authorities.”


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