SELISE automates mission critical GSP Process
May 20, 2014
The European Union’s Generalized System of Preference (GSP), a tariff relief program for the less developed countries was facing severe automation issues and SELISE brings amazing innovation into it.
The Gray Area of GSP
The European Union’s Generalized System of Preference, otherwise known as GSP, is a tariff relief program that is granted to the less developed countries in an attempt to make their exports more competitive in the EU region. For this, the EU employs a complex Rules of Origin (RoO) verification, along with other compliances, which needs to be met in order to qualify availing this privilege.
However, legitimacy of valid exporters from a GSP recipient country such as Bangladesh could come under scrutiny. Players from non-GSP countries have continuously tried to exploit the various loop-holes that revolve around the current compliance system of GSPs in order to unjustifiably benefit from it.
What could be only be called as an ancient way of doing things for exporters, the previous process obtaining a GSP certificate from the EPB was tedious, painful and included an unimaginable amount of paperwork. Critical processes such as exporter registration, form distribution and tracking, origin verification, etc. used to be done manually. The lack of data capture and information tracking made EPB’s operation cumbersome and origin of goods verification ineffective, which in turn allowed for the unscrupulous practices mentioned earlier. There is substantial tax loss from such fraudulent practices. Thus, it became imperative to identify all the valid exporters under a revamped GSP compliance, while also making the process more efficient.
The EU thus went on a quest of process improvement and automation project aimed specifically for Bangladesh. Having hired New York based Index Capital Group (ICG), the EU sought an optimal solution that would yield a more improved operational framework of the Export Promotion Bureau (EPB) of Bangladesh.
SELISE the Savior
ICG collaborated with Secure Link Services AG, Zurich (SELISE) for the development of a software that would meet the specifications for the project. Faced with this herculean task, SELISE still delivered as it developed a cutting-edge web-enabled software GSP Tracker 1.0. Through this software, not only could genuine exporters be registered, but the EPB could also manage the whole GSP filing process. Thus, SELISE came up with a smarter and more efficient process that provided the following advantages:
Reduction of papers and information submission;
Division of work – data entry, submission, review, and verification based on designated roles;
Service and features of the software based on login access and privileges;
Data and filing repository for all registered exporters and users which can be accessed anytime;
Cross checking of vital shipping information and export receipts; and
Management reporting and smart searching.
So how did SELISE do it?
In SELISE, the development of the software involved expertise of cross-functional teams that worked in areas such as planning and design, coding and development, and quality control and testing.
Banking on its agile and innovative team, SELISE utilized state-of-the-art technologies to come up with an impeccable solution to the ailing GSP process. The new features include:
Service availability, data security, and integrity leveraging a highly redundant set of hardware and software;
Access of information via the internet from anywhere anytime under the purview of EPB;
Implementation on state-of-the-art infrastructure ensuring regular backups at geographically non-contiguous locations; and
Access privileges of user accounts are set and managed by a separate class of users within EPB with administrator privileges.
The creation of this automated tool is not only a massive achievement, but also signifies SELISE’s contribution in a project that bridges the Bangladesh export industry with automated IT technology, and for that reason, SELISE is immensely proud.