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WCO/WTO CO-OPERATION IN THE TRADE FACILITATION DOMAIN: NEEDS AND PRIORITIES SELF-ASSESSMENTS

16 十一月 2009

WCO/WTO CO-OPERATION IN THE TRADE FACILITATION DOMAIN: NEEDS AND PRIORITIES SELF-ASSESSMENTS

November 2009

A Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) self-assessment of needs and priorities in the trade facilitation domain was conducted in Muscat (Oman) from 10 to 14 October 2009. Some 78 participants from GCC countries took part in this activity.

This needs and priorities self-assessment successfully raised awareness about trade facilitation at both national and regional levels within the GCC, with the GCC’s Secretariat stressing the benefits of the results for its ongoing programme of work.

The preliminary discussions identified opportunities for additional improvements (e.g. Customs Union). Further review of the comparative national results will also pinpoint future areas for regional alignment.

There was limited involvement by Geneva delegates in this activity, and participants would have benefited from their experience and guidance had they played a more active role in the discussions.

Key roles played by the facilitator

  • Explaining measures and illustrating them with examples
  • Focusing working groups’ attention on issues
  • Advising working groups on how to meet international standards.

All participants found the needs self-assessment results useful at both national and regional level. There is now a clear understanding of the importance of engaging all stakeholders in order to see the process through to a successful conclusion.

A comparison table and report produced by the GCC Secretariat will offer a greater insight into the initial results and identify regional synergies and future opportunities for collaboration.

Recommendations

  • Continue working towards improving the final product
  • Monitor, and take action in respect of, the progress of the ongoing negotiations
  • Hold regular consultations to enhance co-operation between the relevant government agencies
  • Ensure more balanced participation by the public and private sectors
  • Promote regular involvement by the private sector
  • Maintain dialogue between the relevant stakeholders