National Committee on Trade Facilitation

The Union government has constituted a National Committee on Trade Facilitation (NCTF) under the Chairmanship of the Cabinet Secretary, Pradeep Kumar Sinha.

The establishment of the committee is part of the mandatory, institutional arrangement of the TFA.

Its secretariat will be housed within the Central Board of Excise and Customs (CBEC) in the Directorate General of Export Promotion, New Delhi.

The defined objective behind setting up the NCTF is to have a national-level body that will facilitate domestic co-ordination and implementation of TFA provisions.

It will play the lead role in developing a pan-India roadmap for trade facilitation and will be instrumental in synergising various trade facilitation perspectives across the country.

It will also focus on an outreach programme for sensitisation of all stakeholders about TFA.

The committee has a three-tier structure with the main national committee as the pivot for monitoring the implementation of the TFA.

There will be a steering committee below it that will be chaired by Member, Customs, CBEC, which will be responsible for identifying the nature of required legislative changes and spearheading the diagnostic tools needed for assessing compliance to TFA.

This follows India’s ratification of the WTO Agreement on Trade Facilitation (TFA) in April 2016.