Secretary General opens the joint session of the WCO CAP Group Meeting

21 November 2023

On 21 November 2023, the Secretary General of the World Customs Organization (WCO), Dr. Kunio Mikuriya, opened the joint session of the 20th Meeting of the WCO Counterfeiting and Piracy (CAP) Group, bringing together representatives of Member administrations, WCO Regional Intelligence Liaison Offices (RILOs), observer organizations, rights holders and private-sector entities.

In his address, Secretary General Mikuriya welcomed delegates and praised the way in which the WCO CAP Group had contributed positively, since its establishment in 2009, to the Secretariat’s progress in combatting counterfeiting and piracy.

He went on to highlight the Group’s key achievements, such as the two revisions of its mandate and the various tools developed to assist Members in their efforts to prevent the illicit trade in goods infringing intellectual property rights (IPR).

According to the Secretary General, Customs should focus its attention on e-commerce as it was clear that it had become the main method used by criminals to transport counterfeit goods. He brought his address to a close by urging increased collaboration between rights holders and Customs to greatly reduce the trade in counterfeit products.

On behalf of the attendees, the Chairperson of the WCO CAP Group, Mrs. Oumou KEITA TRAORE, expressed her gratitude to Dr. Mikuriya for his opening address, before recalling some milestones reached and underscoring the particular importance of the Secretary General’s participation in the Group’s 15th Meeting in December 2018, at which he had presented the outline of the roadmap for the WCO Secretariat’s IPR Strategy.

The Chairperson continued by praising Dr. Mikuriya for his exceptional leadership as WCO Secretary General, and for his constant support of the CAP Group's undertakings. She concluded by pointing out that over the course of the next two days, Customs and rights holders would have an opportunity to discuss a wide range of topics of common interest.