WCO-UPU Contact Committee endorses the new edition of the joint WCO-UPU Postal Customs Guide

28 November 2023

The 43rd Meeting of the WCO-UPU Contact Committee was held jointly by the World Customs Organization (WCO) and the Universal Postal Union (UPU) from 21 to 22 November 2023. This year, the Committee continued its work in the 2022-2025 cycle with members and observers from each organization. The meeting was hosted by the UPU in a hybrid mode and it was attended by experts from 55 Customs administrations, 47 Designated Postal Operators and 4 International Organizations.

In his opening remarks, Abdel Ilah Bousseta, the UPU Director of Postal Operations, welcomed members and observers to the WCO-UPU Contact Committee meeting. The Director stressed the importance of cooperation between the WCO and the UPU at the international and national levels, and in exploring possible measures to overcome the common challenges ahead, in particular with the emerging electronic advance data (EAD) requirements regarding transmission, quality and timeliness. The WCO Secretariat echoed the opening message by welcoming members and observers to the Committee, and by expressing appreciation in advance for their dedication and contributions.

The Committee was briefed on the first Joint Global Conference between the WCO and the UPU held in Tokyo, Japan on 6-8 June 2023. It was mentioned that a Joint Declaration had been signed as a tangible outcome of the Conference, which should help to enhance the ongoing cooperation reflecting recent challenges around the Customs procedures of the Postal items.

The Committee shared views and provided guidance on addressing common challenges and identifying potential solutions to improve Customs-Post collaboration, including; capacity-building workshops, the implementation of EAD exchanges, improving data quality and compliance, the handling of E-Commerce and trade facilitation, the strengthening of security and safety measures, and the processing of regulatory matters. A joint expert team was established to resolve operational questions relating to emerging EAD requirements.

Finally, the Committee reviewed its Work Plan for the 2022-2025 cycle and endorsed the new edition of the joint WCO-UPU Postal Customs Guide, which will now be submitted to the competent bodies of each organization for adoption.

The 44th meeting of the WCO-UPU Contact Committee will take place in the Fall of 2024.