WCO and BIMCO sign MOU to enhance partnership

19 July 2013

Kunio Mikuriya, Secretary General of the World Customs Organization (WCO), and Torben C. Skaanild, Secretary General of the Baltic and International Maritime Council (BIMCO), have signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to strengthen their cooperation in securing and facilitating global supply chains and in combating fraud.

BIMCO is a shipping association providing a wide range of services to its global membership of stakeholders who have vested interests in the shipping industry, including shipowners, operators, managers, brokers and agents.The association’s main objective is to facilitate the commercial operations of its membership.  BIMCO actively promotes the application of international agreed regulatory instruments. 

The MoU now signed builds on, and replaces, an earlier Memorandum signed in 1992 and will provide a sound basis for the realization of common, innovative and complementary actions on the part of the two Organizations.

In light of other WCO led supply chain initiatives, the WCO Secretary General welcomed this move towards enhanced partnership with BIMCO which would undoubtedly be in the interest of the WCO membership as the Organization sought to reinforce its cooperation with key players and stakeholders in the area of supply chain security. He also emphasized the paramount role Customs plays in supply chain management and the commitment of the WCO and its Members to continue working towards the objective of a secure supply chain.

BIMCO Secretary General Skaanild said that the signing of a revised and renewed MOU to reinvigorate both BIMCO’s relationship with the WCO and the industry’s role in combating illegal maritime activities, lays the foundation for much closer cooperation between ship owners and Customs authorities. It is hoped that future joint efforts – as facilitated by this MoU to counter the modern threats to the supply chain - will significantly heighten the security level for seafarers, ship owners, port states and for society in general, especially in relation to drug smuggling.