Latin American Countries Resolve to Strengthen Customs – Post Cooperation

24 August 2016

Montevideo, Uruguay, 8-10 August 2016

The WCO, UPU and the General Secretariat of the Postal Union of the Americas, Spain, and Portugal (PUASP), with support from Swiss Post and Correos Spain, organised a Customs-Post Workshop for Latin American countries in Montevideo, Uruguay, from 8 to 10 August 2016.

Among other things, the Workshop enhanced participants’ knowledge of the relevant WCO and UPU instruments and tools in terms of strengthening existing cooperative relationships between Customs and postal operators at the national level, in particular improving the electronic exchange of advance information, and enhancing each other’s capabilities in facilitating postal items in a growing e-commerce environment whilst ensuring effective compliance with various regulatory requirements.

Following up the WCO and UPU joint letter to all Customs administrations and postal operators for the implementation of electronic interface between them at the national level, the workshop examined in detail various ways to implement advance electronic exchange of information (pre-loading/pre-arrival) between posts and Customs by using the UPU’s Customs Declaration System (CDS) and/or any other customized solution based on the joint WCO/UPU Customs-Post EDI messaging standards and the WCO Data Model, for an efficient risk management and improved service delivery.

Another important aspect 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 potential ways forward including the formalizing of cooperation through a Memorandum of understanding and exploring possibilities of implementation of electronic interface between post and Customs on a priority.

The representatives from postal operators and Customs administrations of 17 countries of the region acknowledged the importance of the joint workshop, which provided a common platform to discuss issues of mutual interest and explore potential solutions in achieving shared objectives, besides learning from others’ working examples and best practices.