The WCO supports Lebanese Customs in their path to accession to the Revised Kyoto Convention

13 February 2017

Following an invitation from the Lebanese Customs Administration and with the generous support of the Japan Customs Cooperation Fund (CCF Japan), the WCO delivered a National Workshop on the Convention on the Simplification and Harmonization of Customs Procedures (as amended), known as the Revised Kyoto Convention (RKC).

The RKC is a WCO legal instrument regarded by the entire international Customs Community as a blueprint for modern Customs in 21st Century. The accession to the RKC is perceived as an important milestone in any country’s endeavours to further promote legitimate trade and effective Customs controls. As of today the number of Contracting Parties to the RKC is 107.

The mission took place in Beirut, Lebanon from 30 January to 3 February 2017 and its core objective was to provide guidance to the Lebanese Customs on the RKC accession process. Fifteen Customs officials from various units within the Lebanese Customs Administration took active part in the workshop.

In his speech for the opening of the workshop, Mr. Hisham Abou Ibrahim, representing the Higher Council of Customs in Lebanon, presented the Lebanese Customs modernisation efforts, highlighting the importance of and benefits from accession to the RKC.

The WCO experts provided detailed guidance on the principles of the RKC, the rights and obligations of the Contracting Parties to the Convention, as well as the provisions of the Body, the General Annex and the Specific Annexes thereof. With the support of the WCO experts, the workshop participants conducted a preliminary assessment of the compliance of the provisions of the RKC General Annex and one of the Specific Annexes to the Convention vis-à-vis Lebanon’s national legislation. As part of the exercise, follow-up measures were outlined in the areas where the national legislation was found not to be in full compliance with the RKC provisions. A draft detailed Action Plan on Lebanon’s accession to and implementation of the RKC was also discussed and agreed upon.

During the workshop closing ceremony, the WCO experts expressed their appreciation for the excellent local arrangements and reiterated the readiness of the WCO to support the Lebanese Customs in their path to accession to the RKC. At the same time, the representative of the Higher Council of Customs also expressed his gratitude to the WCO for the support provided to the Lebanese Customs Administration so far.