Skip to content

Kolyo Kolev of Customs Agency: Customs Procedures for Import, Export, Transit Fully Digitalized

The customs procedures for export, import, and transit have been fully digitalized, thanks to the introduction of new versions of the Customs Agency’s information systems, Kolyo Kolev, Chief Information Officer at Bulgarian Customs, said in a BTA interview. The digitalization was carried out within a project for upgrading the Agency’s main systems for provision of data and services, funded under Operational Programme Good Governance. 
Kolev, who is also project leader, explained that the information systems provide full availability of services, including during incorporation of new versions of the systems. The services have also been simplified for users; 60% of companies think the new information services have eased the procedures and thus the conditions for doing business in Bulgaria as an outband, inbound and transit customs institution. This saves some BGN 9 million in labour costs a year, Kolev noted.
The Customs Agency, as well as the other customs administration of the EU Member States, are implementing an IT programme related to the biggest customs reform as part of the adoption of a new customs code for the Union. Carrying out the IT part of this reform is regulated by a working programme adopted by the European Commission and a multi-annual strategic plan for implementation of the information systems. Kolev specified that all of Bulgaria’s commitments under the plan have been fulfilled on time. Bulgaria is among the first seven Member States to have incorporated Phase 5 of the transition; next year, 19 countries are expected to join the new transit system, including Hungary, Greece, the Netherlands, and Turkiye. “That is a big success for our administration,” Kolev told BTA.