Directors General of Customs of MENA region meet to discuss priority issues for the region

04 April 2017

At the invitation of Mr. Ahmed Alkhalifa President of Bahrain Customs and WCO Vice-Chair for the North of Africa, Near and Middle East (MENA) region, the 45th Regional Meeting of Directors General of Customs was held in Cairo at the League of Arab States Headquarters on 3 April 2017 with the support of the Egyptian Customs Administration.

Secretary General Kunio Mikuriya presented the current key priorities of the WCO, concentrating on trade facilitation; e-commerce and digital Customs; security; illicit financial flows; and Customs-Tax cooperation.

Delegates supported these areas of priority work and also referred to the question of performance measurement and their concerns about the methodology used by international ranking exercises, such as "Doing Business".

The meeting also heard a presentation by Morocco on the impact on Customs of the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement which had recently entered into force, as well as reports on the activities of the Regional Office for Capacity Building and from the region's Technical Attaché based in the WCO's Capacity Building Directorate.

Delegates expressed appreciation for the hospitality extended to them by the Egyptian Customs Administration, headed by Dr. Abdel Azeez El Magdy, during their stay in Cairo.