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Monitoring & Assessing

Time Release Study (TRS)

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GICA Member / Publisher

Developed by World Customs Organization (WCO),  the Time Release Study (TRS) is a unique tool and method for measuring the performance of Customs activities as they directly relate to trade facilitation at the border.


One of the methods used for the review of clearance procedures is to measure the average time taken between the arrival of the goods and their release. This facilitates Customs to identify both the problem areas and potential corrective actions to increase their efficiency. The use of automation and other sophisticated selectivity methods can allow Customs to improve compliance and at the same time improve facilitation for the majority of low risk goods.


Measuring the time taken for the release of goods also meets the concerns of trade circles regarding long delays in Customs clearance. It helps Customs to respond to trade requirements where the operators need to plan ahead for the movement of goods across borders in order to meet tight production schedules and just-in-time inventory systems that require forward planning.


The time required to release goods has also increasingly become the measure by which the international trading community assesses the effectiveness of a Customs administration. The Time Release Study provides guidance to Customs administrations on the best way to apply this method of internal review.


Image Credit: : Matsuda, Shingo, 2012. The Time Release Study as a Performance Measurement Tool for a Supply Chain and an International Corridor. World Customs Journal, 6(1), pp. 79-92.


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