Under the sponsorship of CCF Japan, a national Workshop on the Harmonized System (HS), organized jointly by the World Customs Organization (WCO) and the "Superintendencia de Administración Tributaria - SAT", was held in Ciudad de Guatemala (Guatemala), from 10 to 12 May 2016. The Workshop was co-facilitated by Mr. Warner West Cisneros, from Nicaragua Customs, a newly WCO Accredited HS trainer. 35 Customs Officers from different areas of the Guatemala Customs Administration attended the Workshop.
The opening of the Workshop was officiated by Werner Ovalle, Deputy Director of the "Superintendencia de Administración Tributaria - SAT" who emphasized the importance of the correct tariff classification of goods and encouraged the participants to take advantage of this high level workshop. Also present at the opening ceremony, Ms. Judy Marroquin, responsable of Human Ressources, also pointed out the importance of the Harmonized System (HS) for trade facilitation and for the modernization of Guatemala Customs.
During the Workshop a wide range of HS-related matters was addressed and the participants were thoroughly informed about classification infrastructure and the fundamental principles of the General Rules and practicalities of HS classification to ensure correct and uniform application of the Nomenclature. The latest classification decisions of the Harmonized System Committee were discussed by participants. An overview of the HS 2017 edition was also offered to participants. Special attention was also paid to Customs Laboratory matters and, in particular, to its role in the correct HS classification and in the protection of the society and the environnement. A detailed overview of the classification infrastructure in Guatemala was explained by the participants and the problems regarding the implementation of a Binding Tariff Information program in Guatemala was also analyzed.
In his closing address, Mr. Alejandro Gonzalez Portocarrero, Project Manager of SAT, thanked the WCO for its assistance in the modernization of the Customs Administration of Guatemala. He encouraged all participants to share the knowledge acquired during the Workshop and, again, emphasized the importance of the correct use and application of the HS.