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Staff members disinfect imported packages inside the Yiwu supervision center for cross-border express deliveries on Jan 22. [Photo/chinanews.com]
At the Yiwu supervision center for cross-border express deliveries, located in Yiwu, East China's Zhejiang province, a dozen staff members, wearing protective garments, goggles, and KN95 face masks, disinfected a group of imported packages and then completed their customs clearance on Jan 22.
These packages, valued at 1.77 million yuan ($273,819) in total, were then distributed to the hands of individual consumers across the country, marking this year's first transaction completed in Yiwu through the electronic World Trade Platform (eWTP).
The eWTP was an initiative proposed by Alibaba in 2016 to engage small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in cross-border trade through a unified electronic operating system.
In June 2019, Yiwu authorities signed a strategic cooperation agreement with Alibaba to introduce the eWTP into Yiwu, which is known as the world's capital of small commodities. Now, the eWTP-enabled digitized customs clearance has become a common practice in the city.
Domestic consumers can now order foreign products through Tmall Global, Alibaba's cross-border e-commerce arm, and it only takes between five to seven days for them to receive the products, which are imported into China through the Yiwu customs.
Yiwu Yilian Technology Co was the customs declarant of the aforementioned imported packages. The company's manager, Zhang Yusong, told local media correspondents that the eWTP-enabled digitized customs clearance helps meet the diversified needs of domestic consumers.
"Previously, the imports available to domestic consumers were mostly those usually seen in bonded warehouses. The eWTP now enables consumers to buy niche products from overseas, thus upgrading their shopping experience," said Zhang.