Regional Seminar on the Role of Customs in Natural Disaster Relief in WCO Africa Regions (Addis Ababa – 9-10 March 2016)

22 March 2016

The WCO, with the support of the Japan Customs Co-operation Fund (CCF Japan), the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), and the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) held a joint seminar on the role of Customs in natural disaster relief at the UN Economic Commission in Africa building in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia on 9-10 March 2016. 

This was the forth in a series of regional seminars planned by the three organizations to give effect to the June 2011 WCO Resolution on the Role of Customs in Natural Disaster Relief. 

The seminar was attended by over 80 participants, representing 19 WCO Members in the West and Central Africa and East and Southern Africa regions, as well as officials from United Nations agencies, the National Red Cross/Red Crescent (RCRC) societies, national disaster management authorities and non-governmental organizations, among others. 

Aimed at promoting the use of existing tools and instruments to help Customs administrations together with other relevant agencies respond efficiently to emergency situations, the Seminar also provided an ideal platform for Customs authorities and their key humanitarian aid partners to share experiences and perspectives in order to obtain feedback on Customs’ future needs and constraints.

In accordance with the June 2011 WCO Resolution, it is expected to organize a similar seminar in the only remaining WCO North Africa and Middle East (MENA) region within a year.