International Transport and Logistics Service Providers Association, UTIKAD, continues to work to reduce the effects of the epidemic and to maintain logistics and trade flows. UTIKAD Sectoral Relations Specialist Gizem Karalı Aydın wrote an article evaluating the current situation.
In his article, UTIKAD Sectoral Relations Specialist Gizem Karalı Aydın stated that it is accepted all over the world that facilitating trade is a key necessity in order to reduce the economic negativities of the coronavirus epidemic; He stated that they have actively participated in 2017 General Meetings, 8 Technical Committees and 8 Working Group Meetings since 36, when the Coordination Committee on Trade Facilitation was established with the support of its members, and they continue to contribute to the progress of the process and produce positive results. Aydın's article shared with UTIKAD members summarizes the current situation:
“Thanks to the alarms given around the world regarding the epidemic that emerged in the first quarter of 2020, the extraordinary efforts of the states, policies and strategies, the effects of the epidemic were gradually reduced. In this process, although the priority is human health, it has become necessary to continue working in areas such as production, trade, logistics, in order for life to continue and needs to be met. In order to reduce the growth rate of an epidemic transmitted by contact, it was inevitable to take some precautions to survive an economy in which life stopped and production and consumption decreased, except for certain exceptions. As a matter of fact, every country in the world that has reached this awareness has developed a strategy according to its own needs. All these strategies come in the same way: "Making it easy". To make life easier, to facilitate activities, to facilitate the process and most importantly to facilitate trade.
LOGISTICS AND TRADE FLOWS SHOULD CONTINUE WITHOUT PROBLEM
In the days when some of the truths we know and used to were no longer true, when we gave up our routine habits or adapted our habits to pandemic conditions, we had another important task as a sector, apart from staying healthy: "To maintain logistics and trade flows". Because the rotation of this wheel was of vital importance for life to continue. In order to achieve this, the "Economic Stability Shield" support package was published in our country. The package included support such as loan support, interest and tax deferral, and short-time working allowance. Many companies from large-scale companies to SMEs have benefited from these supports. As a matter of fact, "short work allowance" support still continues. Even though the logistics sector tried to benefit from these supports as much as possible, even companies with a strong financial structure and sector experience had difficulties in surviving despite the economic support during this process.
In addition to these facilitations, with the "President's Decree on Branding Supports for Foreign Exchange Earning Service Sectors" published in the Official Gazette dated 20 May 2020 and numbered 31132, the brands in the service sector, including logistics, will enter five different markets, separately, within the scope of the "Turquality Support Program". It was announced that it will be supported for the year. Public institutions and organizations have tried to minimize the effects of the epidemic in cooperation.
Facilitation of trade is broadly defined as the simplification and harmonization of all processes and procedures that are subject to, from the production of the goods to the end user, and the reduction of formalities. The concept of trade facilitation means strengthening foreign trade and logistics infrastructure through the application of information technologies and automation. Trade Facilitation Agreement dated February 29, 2016 and 2016/8570 by the Council of Ministers approved in Turkey and Turkey adopted by the World Trade Organization agreement on 16 March 2016 (WTO) is to record history. The agreement entered into force on 110 February 2, after 2017 WTO members completed their internal approval processes. One of the establishment and functioning purposes of the WTO is to ensure "uniformity" and "harmony" in commercial activities throughout the world, thus minimizing commercial barriers, eliminating the problems brought about by legal differences, as well as reducing costs and increasing efficiency.
UTIKAD TAKES AN EFFECTIVE ROLE IN THE COORDINATION COMMITTEE FOR FACILITATING TRADE
In our country, the Coordination Committee for Facilitation of Trade was established under the auspices of the Ministry of Trade. The Trade Facilitation Coordination Committee consists of 23 members in total, chaired by the Ministry of Trade. Since its establishment in 2017, UTIKAD has assumed active roles in different departments of the committee, regularly participating in the General Assembly, Technical Committee, Working Groups (Transparency, Foreign Trade, Infrastructure and Logistics), working for the benefit of our country and the industry, and offering solutions to problems. .
The Coordination Committee for Trade Facilitation is responsible for conducting studies on facilitating trade, contributing to the economic development of our country, lowering commercial costs by reducing bureaucracy, providing fast and high quality customs services based on transparency to merchants and increasing foreign investments in our country. Thanks to the work of the committee established under the Presidency of the Ministry of Trade, it is aimed to facilitate trade and to provide positive developments in terms of both businesses and the national economy. According to the research conducted by the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the full implementation of the Trade Facilitation Agreement by the WTO countries is
It is estimated that it will reduce costs by 12,5% to 17,5%, and this rate will be 14.6% in upper-middle income countries, including our country.
It is recognized around the world that trade facilitation is a key necessity to mitigate the economic downsides of the coronavirus epidemic. Since it is necessary to address the obstacles and opportunities in regulations and practices regarding the transportation of goods, vehicles and people across borders for this facilitation, it is mentioned that public and private sector integration should be provided for all these. It is obvious that economies that do not adopt change in this rapid change process of the world will not be able to maintain their competitive advantage.
In addition to all these, in order to facilitate trade, it is necessary to make more mentality changes than process and transaction facilities and these facilities should be sustainable. In order to take steps that will provide real benefit in all processes that slow down and complicate border crossings and similar trade after this process, which emerged at a time when the world and our country did not expect it, and the bottlenecks in the processes, the state regulating the rules and the public institutions and organizations The private sector representatives who know very well where they are should work in coordination in this process. Especially, public institutions and different ministries should eliminate repetitive processes with automated communication systems between the units within themselves and between each other, ensure that the inspection and control processes are completed without delay and at the highest speed, and the steps to ensure that the entire foreign trade process is carried out in as little as possible and without paper, in electronic environments. should throw. For this, it should be aimed to act with speed, time and cost factors by using developing technology and digital systems.
Facilitating commercial activities in our country in terms of facilitating trade, which is on the agenda of the world's leading institutions and organizations, supporting institutions that serve this purpose, creating awareness in this direction is possible with a comprehensive approach, but it is important for the future strategies and survival struggles of countries.
At this point, UTIKAD has actively participated in 2017 General Assemblies, 8 Technical Committees and 8 Working Group Meetings since 36, when the Trade Facilitation Coordination Committee was established with the support of its members, and continues to contribute to the progress of the process and to produce positive results. "