WCO supports Sudan Customs in its preparations for WTO TFA implementation

12 December 2014

To assist Sudanese Customs in better understanding the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) and considering its future implementation by using necessary WCO instruments and tools, a national Workshop on the role of Customs in implementing the WTO TFA was held in Khartoum Sudan from 23 to 27 November 2014. The workshop organized with financial support from UNDP brought together senior and policy-making level Customs officials.

During the five-day workshop, the WCO experts explained in detail the regulations and terms of the TFA and introduced the WCO Mercator Programme which was developed to assist WCO Members in implementing trade facilitation measures including the TFA. The participants were given an overview of the WCO instruments and tools including, Revised Kyoto Convention (RKC), Coordinated Border management (CBM), Risk Management, Authorized Economic Operator (AEO), Data Model, Time release study (TRS), Single Window (SW), Post clearance audit (PCA) and other guidance and recommendations that serve to enhance Customs responsibilities and facilitate trade. Discussions also focused on the current situation and the way forward/strategic approaches for the implementation of the WTO TFA.

Feedback from participants was very positive, indicating that the workshop fully met their expectations and provided them with a better understanding of Customs trade facilitation related issues. Participants also expressed their interest in next steps according to their strategic objectives, i.e. to cooperate with the WCO in the area of Customs reform and modernization especially related to the establishment of a single window and the implementation of risk management.

At the closing ceremony, Major General Mr. Abdelhafieiz Salih Ali, the Deputy Director General of Sudan Customs, congratulated on the successful conclusion of the Workshop. He confirmed strong political and administrative will to continue and even strengthen the cooperation with the WCO. At this moment, the WCO is continuing to work with Sudan Customs in the follow-up of the workshop.