WCO - UPU Workshop

03 September 2013

In line with the objectives of the MoU between the World Customs Organization and the Universal Postal Union ‘s (UPU) International Bureau, a Joint WCO/UPU Customs Workshop for the Southern African Development Community (SADC) countries was held from 26 to 29 August 2013 in Johannesburg, South Africa. The aim of the Workshop was to improve the knowledge of Customs and postal officials of the SADC Members regarding postal Customs formalities. The event was co-hosted by the South African Post Office (SAPO) and the South African Revenue Service (SARS) and supported by the Customs Cooperation Fund of Korea.

The workshop focused on improving participant knowledge of WCO and UPU instruments and tools relevant for the postal supply chain, with special emphasis on security related issues and exchange of information based on the WCO/UPU Customs Post EDI message, risk management in postal traffic, e-commerce and EMS, as well as cooperation between Customs and designated postal operators at the national level.

An important part of the workshop was the sharing of national experiences where Customs and postal officials delivered joint presentations on the existing situation regarding postal Customs clearance and proposed ways to improve the situation. These presentations showed that a number of SADC members were in the process of concluding MoUs between Customs and the designated postal operator, which is in line with the Revised Kyoto Convention (RKC) Guidelines and is highly encouraged. The participants further examined preparedness for accepting RKC Specific Annex J, Chapter 2 on Postal Traffic.

The workshop agreed on the key issues that should be addressed, including the need to improve compliance with Customs requirements at export. The workshop outcomes will be discussed at the WCO/UPU Contact Committee meeting in November in Bern.