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Opening of the WCO Regional Training Centre in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

17 abril 2019

At the invitation of Mr. Almaz Onolbekov, Chairman of the State Customs Service of the Kyrgyz Republic, WCO Secretary General Kunio Mikuriya attended the opening of the WCO Regional Training Centre (RTC) in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, from 14 to 16 April 2019.

“The hosting of the RTC shows Kyrgyzstan Customs’ willingness to act as a regional hub for WCO activities, especially in terms of human resource development which forms the basis of Customs modernization,” announced Dr. Mikuriya at the opening ceremony.  “The WCO has high expectations of the RTC and is committed to supporting it with global best practice,” he continued.

After a tour of the premises, the RTC staff organized a round table session comprising a range of international and regional organizations, including the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), which supported the RTC’s establishment, the Eurasian Economic Union (EAEU) and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

Kyrgyzstan’s Prime Minister, Mr. Mukhammedkalyi Abylgaziev, hosted a meeting with Dr. Mikuriya to discuss his Government’s plan to make his country a regional hub for transit, through regional cooperation and digital technology, and how the WCO could help to that end.  Dr. Mikuriya described the important role that can be played by Customs in connecting a landlocked country such as Kyrgyzstan, in accordance with global rules and standards.  He welcomed the political understanding and support given to Customs through coordination of border management with other relevant agencies, before pledging his support for Kyrgyzstan Customs and its RTC.

Dr. Mikuriya also visited Kyrgyzstan Customs’ Headquarters, where he addressed young Customs officers.

The opening of the RTC was widely covered by local media.