21st Regional Contact Point meeting in the AP Region

25 November 2011

21st Regional Contact Point meeting in the AP Region

Brisbane, 09-11 November 2011

The 21st Asia Pacific Regional Contact Points Meeting was held in Brisbane, Australia on 9 -11 November 2011. 18 (Australia, Bhutan, Brunei Darussalam, Cambodia, China, Hong Kong China, Fiji, India, Indonesia, Japan, Republic of Korea, Macao China, Malaysia, Mongolia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Singapore, Thailand and Vietnam) out of 33 Members in the Asia Pacific (AP) Region and 3 observers, the WCO Secretariat, RILO AP and ROCB AP, attended this meeting.

Mr. Michael Carmody, the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service CEO, welcomed the delegates and delivered the speech at the opening of the meeting. In his speech, it was pointed out that the Customs administrations are requested to play a critical role for protecting society while supporting economic growth. He also highlighted the importance of partnership between members, such as, by sharing intelligence.

Dr. Chawewan Kongcharoenkitkul, Principle Advisor on Duty Collection Management and Development, Thai Customs, also addressed the meeting, and emphasized the expanded Customs roles in the 21st century. She pointed out the challenges to meet diversified interests in the AP region.

During the meeting, the progresses and achievements under the AP Regional Strategic Plan 2010-2012 were reported and discussed according to its 4 key focus areas: Trade Security and Facilitation, Compliance and Enforcement, Capacity Building, and Research and Analysis. The new AP Regional Strategic Plan for 2012-14 was also discussed during the meeting. The new Plan will be discussed further among Members and will probably be endorsed during the next Regional Heads meeting in 2012.

The presentation by the WCO Secretariat aimed to update the meeting on WCO initiatives and activities according to the 4 key focus areas of the region. In the presentation, the WCO representative explained issues such as Supply Chain Security, WCO Trade Facilitation tools, Resolution on the role of Customs in Natural Disaster Relief and operations relating to enforcement, as well as the „3P approach” (Political will, People, Partnerships) as enablers of WCO Capacity Building. The WCO also promoted its initiatives such as Interface Private-Members (IPM) and Human Resource Development Programme, and encouraged the delegates to response to the survey for a new WCO Annual Report. In addition, the current Capacity Building activities including Columbus Programme, creating a pool of experts, Management Development Programme, CLiKC were also introduced to the members.

Fiji Customs expressed its intention to be a WCO Regional Training Canter, and many delegates welcomed the initiative.