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IBI Projects:

The Gambia Streamlined Customs Procedures

Client: Gambian Customs and Excise Department / World Bank

Year Completed: 2004


Customs operations and port organization influence—and are influenced by—a broad context of trade policy, customs procedures and law, and user concerns. This in turn impacts the procedural, legal, IT, and organizational dimensions of customs reform. With this awareness, IBI fully reviewed the Gambian Customs and Excise Department's (CED) procedures and software with World Bank funding. We:


  • Evaluated customs procedures, infrastructure, and legal constraints in order to streamline customs procedures.

  • Evaluated use of the ASYCUDA software and recommended establishing an ASYCUDA Wide Area Network (WAN) to connect other government bodies with the Customs headquarters for smoother and more efficient data transmission.


The procedural analysis conducted responded to the explicit request of the Gambian Customs and Excise Department (CED) officials to document in exhaustive detail the steps required of each internal office in import clearance. It also responded to an acknowledged need for constructive recommendations for improvement.

Our analysis documented the roles, responsibilities, and processes for each internal office in import clearance and made recommendations for improvement. This led to:


  • A fuller use of the ASYCUDA software,

  • The simplification of customs procedures, and

  • The harmonization of the clearance process with international best practices as well as WCO and WTO standards.


The final report constituted the first comprehensive description of the import clearance process ever put together for the Gambia. IBI offered recommendations designed to make Banjul the most competitive port in West Africa.

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