WCO particpate in the Meeting of the Directors General of Customs of the CPLC

16 December 2022

The World Customs Organization (WCO) took part in the XXXVIth Meeting of the Council of the Directors General of Customs of the Community of Portuguese Language Countries (CPLC), which was held in Dili, East Timor, from 6 to 7 December 2022.

The meeting was chaired by Mr. José António Fátima Abílio, the Commissioner for Customs of East Timor. Eight of the nine countries of the CPLC were present, namely Angola, Brazil, Cape Verde, East Timor, Guinea-Bissau, Mozambique, Portugal and São Tomé and Príncipe.

Three speakers gave addresses at the opening ceremony. The Director General of the CPLC, Ambassador Armindo Brito Fernandes, representing the Secretary General of the CPLC, stressed that the Community’s strength resided in cooperation and the implementation of best practices in various technical Customs areas introduced in the context of the reforms under way across all administrations.

In a recorded speech, Dr. Kunio Mikuriya, the Secretary General of the WCO, thanked the CPLC and the East Timor Tax Authority for participating in the meeting. He mentioned the importance of spirited cooperation among Members to implement the WCO’s 2022-2025 Strategic Plan, which places special emphasis on the aspects of data analysis and green Customs. He welcomed the progress made by the CPLC, especially on cooperation and communication with the WCO. Lastly, he assured the Members of the CPLC about the WCO’s commitment to support them and to proceed together towards common objectives, in line with its policy of strengthening cooperation with regional integration groups to support the implementation of the WCO’s instruments and programmes.

In his opening address, Dr. Rui Augusto Gomes, the Minister of Finance of East Timor, greeted the participants and wished them a constructive meeting full of experience sharing. He stressed the importance of the role that the Customs administrations of the Community play in protecting their economies and controlling their borders.

The meeting reviewed the actions developed for the implementation of three-year (2022-2024) Integrated Programme of Cooperation and Technical Assistance under its Strategic Plan. A report was presented on the progress made by the working groups on the standardization and harmonization of Customs terminology, based on the WCO’s instruments and tools and activities conducted under its Memorandum of Understanding among the countries of the CPLC against fraud.

Other topics related to the effectiveness of Customs controls and the facilitation, as well as simplification of procedures within the Community were presented and discussed. Among them were the Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) Programme, the implementation of trade facilitation measures by Brazilian Customs, the electronic sealing of goods in transit and also the “e.LAB.AT” management system for laboratory analyses, and the electronic single window, interconnecting ASEAN and the CPLC.

The closing session was chaired by Mr. José António Fátima Abílio, the Commissioner for Customs of East Timor, and it included a presentation of the Dili Declaration. A very special thanks were addressed to Dr. Kunio Mikuriya, the Secretary General of the WCO, for his ongoing support and commitment to the CPLC Customs.

The achievements of the meeting were welcomed, in particular the sharing of experience, which will inject greater momentum and commitment into the achievement of the objectives. The XXXVIIth Meeting of the Council of Directors General of Customs of the CPLC will take place in 2023, provisionally in person in Dili, East Timor.

For more information, please contact capacity.building@wcoomd.org.