Building a Regional Framework for Customs Integrity in West Africa

05 April 2019

From 24 to 28 March, 15 WCO Members of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) met to discuss and begin development of an ECOWAS customs integrity framework in Accra, Ghana.  The workshop was jointly organised by the World Customs Organization (WCO)’s Anti-Corruption and Integrity Promotion (A-CIP) Programme for Customs and the IMF’s AFRITAC WEST and AFRITAC WEST2 Regional Technical Assistance Centers alongside the ECOWAS Commission.  The workshop was also attended by observers from the EU, the USA and the UK. 

Mr. Emmanuel Kofi Nti, Commissioner-General of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), an A-CIP Programme Partner Administration opened the event. Opening presentations were also made by Mr. Salifou Tiemtore, Customs Director at the ECOWAS Commission, and by WCO and IMF representatives. All of the countries present shared details on the customs integrity regimes in their respective administrations. The active discussions that ensued led to the development of an expert proposal, to the ECOWAS Commission, on the key elements to include in a customs integrity framework, which the Commission will use as the basis for developing a draft ECOWAS directive or regulation.

This initiative acknowledges the dangers of corruption within customs and society and the need to strengthen the regional context to support delivery of national anti-corruption initiatives in West Africa, including those in A-CIP Partner Administrations. Launched in January 2019, the A-CIP Programme aims to help partner administrations implement new measures to fight corruption and promote integrity in accordance with the Revised Arusha Declaration, improving the business environment for cross-border trade.

For more details, please contact or visit the A-CIP Programme Page.