Third Global Canine Forum in Argentina

03 July 2015

The WCO organized the Third Global Canine Forum from 24 to 26 June 2015 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, with the support of the Federal Administration of Public Revenue (AFIP) of Argentina.

The Forum provided an open platform for over 90 experts from 28 countries to share the latest best practices and their experience on the topic of detector dog and handler training. Opening the meeting, Mr. Gaozhang Zhu, Director of the WCO Compliance and Facilitation Directorate, and Mr. Guillermo Michel, Argentina’s Director General of Customs, both recognized the long tradition of using dogs to detect contraband and protect society.

They stressed the key role played by canine experts and the need for their expertise and professionalism, encouraging a proactive exchange of experience between experts to fight more effectively against criminal organizations around the world. Mr. Zhu also extended his gratitude to AFIP for hosting this important global event.

During the first two days of the Forum, participants actively exchanged knowledge and experience of various aspects of canine programmes such as designing and managing detector dog and handler training, dog breeding, veterinary-related issues and the general running of canine centres. AFIP’s use of advanced technology and its scientific approach when it comes to dog training, handling, breeding and research, placing the Administration among the best in the region in this domain, was also broached.

 Participants also welcomed the WCO initiative of creating a Virtual Expert Group to discuss these issues. Additionally, some countries’ representatives expressed an interest in having their canine centres accredited by the WCO as Regional Dog Training Centres (RDTCs).

On the third and last day of the Forum, Mr. Ricardo Echegaray, Federal Administrator of AFIP, joined the delegates on their visit to one of the terminals of the port of Buenos Aires, where dog and handler teams from AFIP and Cuba Customs demonstrated their detection skills.