Montenegro Customs deploys WCO Cargo Targeting System

26 October 2023

Montenegro has joined a growing list of nations in adopting the World Customs Organization's (WCO) Cargo Targeting System (CTS) to bolster its cargo risk assessment and targeting capabilities.

The WCO CTS is an application which enables Customs to capture cargo manifest, bill of lading and air waybill data in an electronic format and analyse the collected data to identify high-risk shipments at import, export, and transshipment across the full range of Customs threats.

Traditionally, Customs risk management has been a local practice, conducted at individual ports, airports, and Customs locations. However, the advent of automation and the widespread availability of electronic trade data within the global supply chain has led to a shift in these practices. The WCO CTS aligns with this new approach, offering flexible access to critical data, enabling countries to systematically apply consistent risk indicators, generated from risk profiles and watch lists, to all cargo consignment records.

To mark the successful deployment of the WCO CTS in Montenegro, a "Train-the-Trainer" event was conducted from 9 to 12 October 2023. This event, led by the WCO and organized by the Montenegro Revenue and Customs Administration, empowered local WCO CTS users with the knowledge and skills required to maximize the functionality of the system. Moreover, it aimed to prepare these experts to educate and train others within their administration, ensuring the long-term sustainability and self-sufficiency of the project. The event also provided a platform for discussions on the seamless integration of WCO CTS into local risk management processes and the exchange of best practices in cargo risk assessment and targeting on a broader scale. Financial support for the event was generously provided by the United Kingdom Border Force.

Officers from various departments took part in this event, including the Risk Analysis and Intelligence Department, the Anti-smuggling Department, the Port Control Unit established under the UNODC WCO Container Control Programme (CCP), and the Information Systems Department, which will oversee the national-level maintenance of the application.

The implementation of the WCO CTS is a noteworthy initiative for Montenegro Customs and will contribute to enhancing its capacity to detect fraud and illicit trafficking while facilitating legal trade.