WCO strengthens its trade facilitation support to the Philippines under the Mercator Programme

10 February 2022

On 4 February 2021, the WCO met with the Bureau of Customs (BOC) of the Republic of the Philippines under the leadership of its Commissioner, Mr. Rey Leonardo B. Guerrero, for a strategic executive-level meeting to discuss the ongoing trade facilitation capacity building collaboration.

Since the development of the Mercator Implementation plan in 2019, the WCO supports the BOC on a number of areas both related to organizational development as well as technical trade facilitation measures, including  Risk Management, Time Release Study, Air Cargo Streamlining, Human Resource Management , Integrity, as well as Gender Equality and Diversity. Significant progress has been made in multiple areas under the Trade Facilitation in Middle Income Countries Programme (TFMICs) with support of the United Kingdom’s Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) and in partnership with the World Bank Group. Currently, the capacity building partnership with BOC is made possible with the support of the United Kingdom’s Her Majesty Customs & Revenue (HMRC) through the HMRC-WCO-UNCTAD Trade Facilitation Capacity Building Programme, which brings together the WCO and UNCTAD in a partnership for TFA implementation.

This strategic meeting provided an opportunity for the WCO and BOC to discuss the progress of the activities implemented in the last two years and discuss priorities going forward, especially with regard to the planning of in-country missions now that travel restrictions are evolving. In the upcoming months, the WCO is planning to step up its efforts to enhance the BOC capacity in the areas of Integrity, Risk Management, Leadership Management Development as well as Gender Equality and Diversity.

Commissioner Guerrero expressed its appreciation for the support received under the framework of the UK funded trade facilitation capacity building programmes and noted that much has accomplished in the last years thanks to the energy and enthusiasm of the WCO team in sharing expertise and resources. He also added “we now have to maximize and sustain the results for the next years to come”. The WCO looks forward to continue its collaboration with the BOC and also reiterated its appreciation to the BOC for its positive and hands-on approach and towards remote support.

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