WCO/Japan Regional Customs Laboratories Programme

The WCO/Japan Regional Customs Laboratories Programme is a recent initiative, having been launched in 2013 by the WCO in cooperation with Japan Customs. It provides an opportunity for selected candidates from the WCO members to obtain and update their knowledge and skills in chemical analysis of samples for HS classification purposes at the WCO Regional Customs Laboratory (RLC) in Japan, and to improve their knowledge about Harmonized System at the WCO.

The program aims to allow participants to:

  • obtain and update their knowledge and skills in chemical analysis of samples for HS classification purposes at the RCL in Japan;
  • improve their knowledge and skills, especially regarding the implementation of new technologies and techniques as well as the use of sophisticated equipment in the RCL;
  • enhance the efficiency of the management of a Customs Laboratory;
  • enhance tariff classification abilities, particularly in the field of agricultural and chemical products;
  • improve general understanding of the WCO and the International Convention on the Harmonized System (HS) and its amendments;
  • know the core fundamentals of the HS, in order to understand the basic rules for classifying goods in the HS 2012 and to legally justify their classification decisions.
  • understand how the HS and its instruments and tools, such as the classification infrastructure, operate at international and national level;

Candidates for the Programme must be Customs officials, (i) who are working at a Customs Laboratory as an analyst; or (ii) who would be a candidate to work at a Customs Laboratory in the near future.

Under this Programme, selected Customs officials of an appropriate technical level will be given an opportunity to study one week at the WCO Headquarters and then, about six weeks at the RCL in Japan, to enable them to acquire valuable experience.

The Programme is conducted in English.

The nomination process is set out below :

  • March – invitation letters sent to developing countries
  • April – deadline for submission of nominations
  • May – Selection process undertaken end June – results notified to candidates
  • October – start of the programme