The WCO has published the 83rd edition of WCO News, the Organization’s flagship magazine aimed at the Customs community, which provides a selection of informative articles that touch the international Customs and trade landscape.
This edition features a special dossier on the use of collective action to fight corruption and how it can apply in the Customs context, and includes both country-specific experiences as well as the views of Customs’ partners.
It also puts a spotlight, in its focus section, on the WCO Mercator Programme, the capacity building programme designed by the WCO to assist governments in implementing the Customs trade facilitation measures outlined in the WTO Agreement on Trade Facilitation.
Other highlights include articles on the implementation of a new standard to ensure that men and women receive equal pay for equal work, enhanced control of light aviation in West Africa, the use of basic mathematics to fight corruption and bad practices, and much more.
The magazine is published and distributed free of charge three times a year, in February, June and October, and is available online or in paper format. Source: WCO
Following an invitation from Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA), WCO successfully completed a review of Zimbabwe’s Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) pilot and developed a series of recommendations for a “next generation” AEO programme that takes into account the WCO SAFE Framework of Standards, the WCO Voluntary Compliance Framework and best practices from other WCO members, as outlined in the WCO AEO Compendium. The mission, which took place between July 18 and 22, built on the March 2016 Mercator scoping mission, which established a multi-year framework of support for Zimbabwe under the tailor-made track of the Mercator Programme and was delivered with the financial and technical support of Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC).
A total of 20 representatives from ZIMRA and 15 trade representatives, participated in a facilitated dialogue which provided the mission team with a comprehensive overview of ZIMRAs’ current AEO programme, while raising awareness and understanding of relevant international standards and best practices. Based on the review, the mission team identified a series of future capacity building activities and deliverables, which can be supported under the current multi-year Mercator Programme engagement with Zimbabwe. The WCO looks forward to continued collaboration with ZIMRA and HMRC and UNCTAD in the implementation of this plan. Source: WCO
The WCO, in its effort to assist Members with Strategic Planning activities and WTO TFA implementation held two back to back accreditation workshops in Pretoria, South Africa. These events were held during the week of 1-5 February 2016 and 8-12 February 2016, were funded by the United Kingdom within the framework of the WCO-DFID ESA project and HMRC-WCO-UNCTAD project and organizationally supported by the South African Revenue Service.
24Customs officers from the WCO ESA and WCA regions participated in the workshops and were assessed against the Customs Modernization Advisors (CMAs) and Mercator Programme Advisors (MPAs) required profile through a series of testing exercises, presentations, role-plays, group activities and plenary discussions.
Participants were also required to demonstrate their knowledge and strategic application of core WCO tools and instruments and the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement along with their potential to facilitate discussions with senior Customs and other officials in a strategic context.
At these two events 15 participants successfully completed step 1 of the accreditation process as they demonstrated their potential to become CMA’s/MPA’s during the range of workshop activities.
From the five WCO CMA/MPA accreditation events held to date a total of 41 participants have been assessed as being suitable to become CMAs and MPAs under step 1 of the accreditation process and will be invited to participate in TFA implementation support missions under the Mercator Programme in order to complete the accreditation process. It is expected that the successful candidates are made available by their Customs administrations for further support missions in the future. Source: WCO