Three contract research organisations (CROs) operating out of China’s Zhangjiang Hi-Tech Park are trying out a new express customs clearance model that could eventually be extended to other CROs in the Park.

A focal point for pharmaceutical R&D in China, Zhangjiang Park recommended Sundia MediTech, Huiyuan Biotechnology and Frontage Laboratories for the scheme, which was proposed jointly by Shanghai Pudong Customs and Pudong International Airport Customs in response to central government efforts to promote the outsourcing industry in China.

With the rapid growth of the country’s contract research sector, significant bottlenecks have developed in the customs clearance system due to elements such as high import/export volume and strict storage requirements, points out Sundia MediTech.

The express clearance trial incorporates strategies such as ‘declaration in advance and clearance upon goods arrival’ and an archiving system for classification and price review to achieve a balance between strict supervision and efficiency, Sundia explains.

The three CROs were recommended for the trial based on factors such as reputation, track record, size and status. The companies’ credibility, internal management systems, laboratory qualifications and customs clearance records were then subject to detailed review and screening.

The next step will be to expand the scheme within Zhangjiang Park on the basis of experience so that a better service can be provided to support the growth of the CRO industry in China, Sundia says.