WCO Issues the Punta Cana Resolution

10 December 2015

The WCO Policy Commission has issued the Punta Cana Resolution, which concerns the security role of Customs, particularly in light of the recent spate of terror attacks in various regions around the world.

The Resolution is closely aligned with other international declarations such as the Statement of 16 November delivered by the G20 group and the United Nations Security Council’s Resolution of 20 November condemning the terrorist attacks and urging Members to re-concentrate their efforts to suppress such attacks.

Recalling three key Recommendations issued by the WCO; the Recommendation Concerning the Use of Advance Passenger Information (API) and Passenger Name Record (PNR) for Efficient and Effective Customs Control (June 2015), the Recommendation Concerning the Protocol Against the Illicit Manufacturing of and Trafficking in Firearms, their Parts and Components and Ammunition (2002), and the Recommendation on the need to Develop and Strengthen the Role of Customs Administrations in Tackling Money Laundering and in Recovering the Proceeds of Crime (2005), the Resolution emphasizes the key role that Customs Administrations have to play - and the critical space they occupy at the border - in the prevention of future terrorist attacks.

WCO Secretary General Kunio Mikuriya, upon the publication of the Resolution, welcomed its timely release and urged WCO Members to consult and utilize the broad range of WCO instruments and tools at their disposal with respect to security matters. Renewed cooperation, enhanced communication, and increased engagement were critical components of, and the bedrock for, Customs Administrations’ fight against terrorism.

‘I welcome this Resolution on behalf of the global Customs community and pledge to continue to advocate for increased cooperation at the national and international level between Customs and other border and law enforcement agencies to ensure that Customs Administrations worldwide may function at an optimum level, leveraging all the resources at their disposal, in the fight against terrorism.’