European nCEN countries discuss latest technological advances of WCO nCEN application

24 November 2021

On 10 November 2021, the WCO Secretariat and nine countries utilizing the nCEN application participated in the 2nd European Regional Meeting of nCEN Programme Leaders, conducted virtually because of the ongoing restrictions associated with the current global health crisis.  The Meeting was chaired by the current Regional nCEN Programme Leader, Georgia.  The Heads of the RILO (Regional Intelligence Liaison Office) for Eastern and Central Europe and the RILO for the Commonwealth of Independent States also attended, as Observers.  Even though the European regional network of countries using the National Customs Enforcement Network application (nCEN) was inaugurated by the WCO only in 2020, it has already managed to establish itself as one of the most active networks within the 50-country strong global nCEN community.

With the global health crisis affecting our workplaces and ways of cooperation, the focus on digitalization in the Customs domain has progressed and now covers the interconnectivity and interoperability of tools, data driven analytics, and the facilitation of secure information exchange.  These strategic objectives are in fact echoed in the WCO Charter of Data Quantity and Quality Enhancement in the CEN, which calls on WCO Members to monitor CEN data entry at the national level in order to ensure timely and high-quality data input, as well as the transfer of data from the nCEN and CENcomm applications to the global CEN database in an automated manner.

With these objectives in mind, this 2nd European Regional Meeting discussed the latest data entry facilitation solutions introduced in the nCEN, including the simplified input format and the release of the nCEN desktop application, with a particular focus given to the exchange of information among countries via the nCEN application.  The Meeting also discussed further improvements to the application in order to meet the evolving operational enforcement needs of Customs administrations, underlining the need to pursue the interoperability of nCEN at the national level with other, local law-enforcement databases in order to maximize data-driven decision-making.

The Meeting concluded with the re-election of Georgia as the Regional nCEN Programme Leader, with Georgia thereby taking on the responsibility of presenting the European perspective in the wider Global nCEN Network.