New funding for the STCE Programme from the US Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA)

13 May 2022

On Monday 9 May 2022, Dr. Robert Pope, Director of Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) at the United States Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA), met with the Deputy Secretary General of the World Customs Organization (WCO), Mr. Ricardo Treviño Chapa, at WCO Headquarters in Brussels.

The meeting was held in the context of the new grant agreement signed by the WCO with the US DTRA. The latter will be funding several activities under the Strategic Trade Control Enforcement (STCE) Programme with the aim of assisting Customs administrations in developing organizational capacity to undertake their counter proliferation mandate, as established by United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540 (2004), through the enhancement of Customs’ officers ability to identify, detect and seize weapons of mass destruction (WMDs) and related items.

The STCE Programme is part of the WCO Security Programme and started as a project in 2013 before becoming a long-term programme in 2016, focused on capacity building and enhancing regional and inter-regional cooperation. Acknowledging the important work conducted by the STCE Programme until now and wishing for it to continue, the US DTRA is providing financial support to the programme for a period of three years. This support will allow more Customs administrations to establish and foster effective strategic trade controls in order to fight against transnational organized crime and terrorism associated with the proliferation of WMDs.

Mr. Treviño Chapa expressed his gratitude to Dr. Pope and the United States for their support to the WCO and its Compliance and Enforcement Sub-Directorate. The future of the programme was then discussed, focusing on activities already planned and, in particular, some upcoming enforcement operations in the area of strategic trade control.

For more information on the STCE Programme and its development, please contact the WCO Secretariat at