Security Programme

Terrorism, proliferation of weapons and materials of mass destruction, trafficking of small arms and explosives, and illicit diversion of dual use goods pose a serious threat not only to security and safety of people, but also to economic development, political stability and social cohesion of countries across the globe.

Customs Administrations play a critical role at the international border crossings in the whole-of-government efforts to mitigate these threats. Customs manages the cross-border flows of goods, people and means of transport to ensure they comply with law. They detect and prevent trafficking of dangerous, restricted and prohibited goods.

The WCO Security Programme concentrates on strengthening Customs administrations’ capacity to deal with security related issues at the national level and aims at facilitating the global Customs community’s ability to deal with these threats at the international level.

WCO Security Programme activities are aimed at reaching border security outcomes in five strategic areas. These include: 

  • Policy setting and foresight;
  • Providing guidance and good practices on Customs controls in relation to security;
  • Coordination of security related Customs law enforcement programmes and operations;
  • International cooperation;
  • Technology; and
  • Technical assistance and capacity-building.

At the operational level, the Programme has three commodity-based Sub-Programmes/Projects. These include a specific initiative in the field of explosive precursor chemicals, Programme Global ShieldStrategic Trade Control Enforcement Project (STCE) and small arms and light weapons initiative. In addition to these commodity based areas, the WCO cooperates on the regular bases with the United Nations (UN) bodies and other international organizations to help its Members to better cope with their international obligations stipulated by various UN Security Council Resolutions etc.