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Message from Secretary General

The WCO welcomes the World Trade Organization (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) adopted at the WTO’s Ninth Ministerial Conference in Bali, Indonesia from 3 to 7 December 2013. It constitutes an important milestone for the WTO and global trade.

The potential of the TFA in the Bali Package is significant. In accordance with some analysis, the measures will boost prosperity by reducing administrative burden and transaction costs, and are expected to save developing countries around US$325 billion a year and accelerate their integration into the global value chains. According to OECD, Developed countries also stand to gain with a 10 percent cut in their trade costs and easier trade flows for their operators. The potential new gains from trade facilitation are considerable, especially for countries that have yet to apply its principles.

Reform requires resources and technical capacity, but the Agreement ensures that those who need and ask for support will receive it. Moreover, the instruments, tools and strategies for implementing trade facilitation measures already exist.

With decades of experience in implementing global Customs standards, the World Customs Organization (WCO) is an important source of expertise and support for its 179 Member countries, covering 98 percent of world trade. WCO standards and technical assistance delivery will support the global uniform implementation of the TFA.

This part of the WCO website will bring you all relevant information regarding the implementation of the TFA and provide Members with guidance on how to implement it.