Harmonized System Workshop for Chemists opens at the WCO

21 October 2013

A new Customs Laboratory Programme was launched on 21 October 2013 at WCO Headquarters in Brussels, under the sponsorship of Japan (CCF/JAPAN).  Six experienced Customs chemists from Costa Rica, India, Indonesia, Mongolia, Thailand and Turkey were invited to take part in the programme. During the opening ceremony, WCO Secretary General, Kunio Mikuriya, expressed his appreciation of the contribution that Customs laboratories are making to the overall effort of the international community to secure and facilitate trade and stressed that the Harmonized System (HS) continues to be celebrated as a core WCO instrument for harmonizing international commerce.

Modern Customs laboratories are instrumental in ensuring proper tariff classification, determining origin, protecting consumers from imports of potentially harmful and dangerous merchandise, preventing unlawful practices in international trade, and underpinning fair and efficient revenue collection.

Following the one-week Workshop at the WCO, during which the participants will study WCO HS tools intended for Customs chemists, including the WCO Customs Laboratory Guide, the participants will journey to Japan for practical training. The Central Customs Laboratory of the Japan Customs will host a six-week course on chemical analysis methods that will focus on new technologies and techniques, as well as the use of sophisticated analytical equipment. The focus of this comprehensive programme is to enhance the effectiveness and efficiency of Customs Laboratory management in the participants’ administrations.

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