Regional Workshop for the Americas and Caribbean highlights the importance of information exchange at regional level for enhanced Customs control

04 December 2023

On November 16, 2023, the World Customs Organization (WCO) Vice-Chair of the Americas and the Caribbean Region, in collaboration with the WCO Regional Intelligence Liaison Office (RILO) South America, held a regional workshop on “Good Practices for the Control of Restricted or Prohibited Goods and the Importance of Information Exchange through the WCO’s CEN and CENcomm Platforms.”

The event brought together 134 Customs officials from”19 countries in the region and National Contact Points of the regional RILO Network, and provided a forum for sharing experiences in the effective control of the import and export of goods of regional interest.

Opening remarks were made by the representative of the Regional Vice-Chair and the WCO Director of Compliance and Facilitation, Mr. Pranab Kumar Das. These were followed  by interventions from the RILO Global Network 2023-2024 Chair and Head of the WCO Regional Intelligence Liaison Office (RILO) South America, Mr. Roy Díaz Orellana, and the Head of the WCO RILO Central America, Mr. Edwin Orlando Curtidor.

The participants could then listen to presentations by experts from the Customs administrations of Argentina, Chile, the Dominican Republic and Peru on specific case studies, which highlighted various modalities of illicit trafficking of drugs, precursor chemicals, unauthorized medicines and pharmaceuticals as well as management of hazardous materials and wastes.

Emphasis was also placed on good practices of Customs intelligence for the effective detection of smuggling routes. In this framework, a comprehensive overview of ways information exchange can be ensured through the use of WCO platforms was provided by the RILO Global Network 2023-2024 Chair, Mr. Roy Diaz, and the CEN and CTS Programme Manager.

Through this workshop, the region showed a solid commitment to strengthen regional Customs strategies and promote a collaborative exchange of information for a more efficient and coherent Customs control, considering that the exchange of information and intelligence is one of the key pillars of the strategy for controlling and combating customs fraud.

By consolidating cooperation on risk management and intelligence between Customs administrations in the region, the event is fully in line with the Regional Strategic Plan 2022-2024 for the Americas and the Caribbean, as well as the WCO Strategic Plan 2022-2025.