Successful WCO Integrity Diagnostics for Bureau of Customs of Philippines

01 October 2021

The World Customs Organization (WCO) – with the support of integrity experts of Maldives Customs and Pakistan Customs – has completed an Integrity Diagnostic mission to the benefit of the Philippines Bureau of Customs (BoC). In light of the applicable COVID-19 related travel constraints, it was the third time that such a mission took place on a remote basis.  It allowed for engagement with a wide range of stakeholders across the country and complemented the Customs Integrity Perception Survey (CIPS) conducted between 21 July-05 August 2021 among BoC officers and the private sector. The WCO’s integrity support to BoC is made possible under the auspice of the Trade Facilitation in Middle Income Countries (TFMICs) Programme, financially supported by the United Kingdom Government’s Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office. It directly contributes to the BoC’s vision of having a credible Customs administration that is among the world’s best.

The mission’s high-level executive kick-off meeting was jointly presided by Mr. Rey Leonardo B. Guerrero, BoC Commissioner and Mr. Ricardo Trevino Chapa, WCO Deputy Secretary General. They agreed that integrity is a cross-cutting issue that should be part of Customs’ DNA and internalized by all. The BoC sees the WCO’s support on integrity as a cornerstone of successful and sustainable Customs and trade facilitation reform and modernization initiatives as it would reinforce BOC to deliver quality services. During the closing session on 24 September, the key strategic outcomes of the mission and the findings of the CIPS were welcomed by the BoC Commissioner – noting that they will constitute the base for a comprehensive approach on action planning, including awareness-raising and stakeholder communications.

The mission aimed to assess the current integrity situation in the Philippines Customs environment and to identify areas and opportunities for further improvement in the BoC integrity agenda by providing strategic and technical advice and recommendations in line with best practices and the international standards of the WCO Revised Arusha Declaration concerning Good Governance and Integrity in Customs. It also directly relates to the BoC’s 2019 WCO’s Mercator Implementation Plan, which the BoC Commissioner acknowledges as the start of a groundbreaking transformation journey.

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