Shanghai-based contract research organisation (CRO) Sundia MediTech Company has seen the customs clearance time for its clinical trial shipments drop from an average of three days to one day under a new scheme being tested out in the Chinese city.

The Express Clearance model applies to Sundia and two other CROs –Huiyuan Biotechnology and Frontage Laboratories – operating out of Shanghai’s Zhangjiang Hi-Tech Park. They were chosen to pilot the scheme by Zhangjiang Group Co. in co-operation with Shanghai Pudong Customs and Pudong International Airport Customs.

The initiative was launched to address the significant bottlenecks that have built up in the customs clearance system due to factors such as high import/export volume and strict storage requirements. With Express Clearance, various measures have been implemented to speed up clearance processes while maintaining the necessary supervision of CRO shipments.

As part of this effort, Sundia noted, trained customer service professionals at Shanghai Customs have been detailed to assist CROs in ensuring a smooth declaration and clearance procedure.

“The Express Customs Clearance privilege granted to Sundia greatly benefits our clients with high-quality and effective service on a timely basis,” said Dr Wang Xiaochuan, chairman and chief executive officer of Sundia MediTech.

The plan is to extend the express clearance scheme to other CROs once the current trial is completed.