Presentation of the GEOAT updates at the latest Virtual working group on Gender equality and diversity, with a record attendance

31 May 2023

WCO Members of the Virtual Working Group (VWG) on Gender Equality & Diversity gathered through an online meeting on the 24th and 25th of May to discuss recent developments of the WCO programme advancing gender equality and diversity in Customs. A number of recent initiatives were discussed, including progress in the development of a pool of Recognized experts on gender equality and diversity in Customs, the new draft updates of the WCO Gender Equality Organizational Assessment Tool (GEOAT), and the results of the questions dedicated to gender balance in Customs in the WCO annual survey.  The new updates of the GEOAT include indicators covering gender-sensitive and inclusive communication, integrity, safety and security. The meeting also provided an opportunity for four Customs administrations, Indonesia, Germany (in the session for English speakers), and Morocco and Tunisia (in the French-speaking session), to present their experiences on promoting gender equality and diversity in their respective administrations.

The VWG meeting made a new record with a total 72 participants in the two sessions, including 35 countries (Australia, Botswana, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Cambodia, Canada, Cote d’Ivoire, Ethiopia, Germany, Greece, Haiti, Iceland, Indonesia, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kosovo, Lesotho, Maldives, Mauritius, Mexico, Moldova, Morocco, Namibia, New Zealand, Niger, Peru, Togo, Tunisia, Uganda, United Kingdom, Ukraine, United States of America, Zambia and Zimbabwe), a representative from the European Union and the representatives from 3 Regional Offices of Capacity Building in the Asia Pacific, West and Central Africa and East and Southern Africa regions. The meeting also included elections for the mandates of the Chair and Vice Chair of the VWG for 2023 - 2024.

The WCO welcomes the rising number of participants in the VWG and considers this a sign of Members’ increasing interest in these topics.

For more information on the GED in Customs initiatives or to join the dedicated VWG, please contact