Second Global Canine Forum and opening of the Regional Dog Training Centre in Moscow

30 May 2013

From 28 to 30 May 2013, the WCO organized the second Global Canine Forum in Moscow, Russian Federation. On 29 May, within the framework of the Forum, the WCO Regional Dog Training Centre for the Russian Federation was inaugurated.

This Global Canine Forum was in keeping with the tradition established by the first Forum held at the WCO in January 2011 to celebrate International Customs Day. The second Forum was opened by Mr. Vladimir Malinin, First Deputy Head of the Russian Federal Customs Service, and WCO Secretary General Kunio Mikuriya. Officials responsible for dog training and dog handlers from 28 countries took part in the Forum. Secretary General Mikuriya stressed the importance of knowledge and professionalism among Customs dog and handler teams, which make a considerable contribution to the fight against illicit trade and thus serve to protect society. He expressed his gratitude to the Russian Federation for hosting the Forum, which provided an opportunity to share current best practices and experiences among countries setting up dog and handler training centres, as well as to identify challenges in rolling out new canine centres and training programmes.

During the first day of the Forum, participants actively exchanged views on various aspects of the operation of canine centres and training programmes. They agreed to set up a virtual working group to promote cooperation and to develop common standards for training programmes, as well as to share perspectives on the establishment of Regional Dog Training Centres.

On the second day of the Forum, delegates attended the inauguration of the WCO Regional Dog Training Centre. They visited the facility, enjoyed a demonstration by detector dogs and continued their technical discussions on the spot. Secretary General Mikuriya pointed out that the Regional Centre will serve as an excellent infrastructure to strengthen the network of dog trainers and handlers, and will prove a very effective tool for Customs enforcement activities.