First ESA Regional Customs and Donor Dialogue
The first WCO East and Southern Africa dialogue between Customs and international cooperating partners was held from 15 to 16 March 2012 in Port Louis, Mauritius. This event brought together the Customs administrations of the region with international cooperating partners. The Dialogue explored a number of aims, including the development of a mutual understanding around the goals and strategic plan of Customs in the region and the key issues driving cooperating partners. It also resulted in a exchange around Customs reform and modernization initiatives that are underway and planned and served to create new linkages between these initiatives. The Dialogue confirmed the need for structured and ongoing discussion around reform and modernization in the region and endorsed the WCO’s Project Map Database as an instrument that will serve to share information, enable administrations to identify their needs and to manage knowledge around reform and modernization. Mr Vivek Ramburun, the Vice-Chair for the ESA region, said that the Dialogue was a very positive first step to develop a coordination framework in the region between Customs and all cooperating partners. Erich Kieck, the Director for Capacity Building, mentioned that the event served to strengthen ongoing and helped forge new partnerships in a practical way that leverages on all efforts and prevents overlap.