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National Workshop on the Revised Kyoto Convention and Rules of Origin in Haiti

20 mayo 2016

Within the framework of the Capacity Building Programme, the World Customs Organization (WCO), with financial support from the European Union through the Caribbean Export Development Agency, organized a National Workshop on the Revised Kyoto Convention, Trade Facilitation and Rules of Origin for the Haiti Customs Administration. This Workshop was conducted in Port-au-Prince (Haiti) from 2 to 13 May 2016, and was attended by around sixty officials and managers from the Haiti Customs Administration.

During the first part of the Workshop, participants were given presentations on the content of the Revised Kyoto Convention, the advantages of the Convention, the accession procedure, and the rights and obligations of Contracting Parties. During this Workshop, the WCO facilitator also presented the Mercator Programme, aimed at assisting and promoting harmonized implementation of the World Trade Organization (WTO) Agreement on Trade Facilitation (TFA) using WCO instruments and tools. The provisions of the Agreement, and the work carried out by the WCO to accompany its Members, were also set out.

In addition, the concept of Coordinated Border Management and the WCO Time Release Study (TRS) Guide were presented to demonstrate their usefulness in the context of implementation of the TFA.

Topics discussed during the second part of this Workshop included the key concepts for proper origin determination, and a number of related operational issues, such as the establishment of an efficient organization, provision of effective training and private sector outreach.

During the Workshop, the WCO presented its Comparative Study on Preferential Rules of Origin and the Database of preferential trade agreements.

The Workshop also allowed presentation of the WCO's Revenue Package initiatives, including the Guidelines on Preferential Origin Verification, Origin Certification and Advance Rulings, which have been designed to assist WCO Members in bringing the provisions in Free Trade Agreements into smooth operation in the field.

Discussions during this National Workshop also emphasized the importance of verifying the originating status of goods, rather than merely checking the authenticity of the Certificate of Origin.

During the Workshop, participants were eager to deepen their knowledge on the practical application of Rules of Origin and actively participated in practical exercises.

The Workshop concluded successfully with positive feedback from participants who greatly appreciated the information received and the insights and experiences shared during the two weeks on these issues, which are key to building the capacity of personnel and above all to the modernization of the Haiti Customs Administration.