The SECO-WCO GTFP officially launches its second phase

28 February 2024

On 22 February 2024, the World Customs Organization (WCO) hosted the wrap-up ceremony of Phase I of the SECO-WCO Global Trade Facilitation Programme (GTFP) and officially inaugurated Phase II (2024 - 2027). SECO and the WCO expressed their sincere gratitude for the steadfast cooperation and dedication exhibited by the 15 beneficiary countries over the past five years, reaching notable advancements in international trade facilitation and organizational development.

Throughout Phase I, the GTFP provided capacity-building support to the Customs Administrations of Bangladesh, Bolivia, Colombia, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Jordan, Moldova, Mongolia, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Serbia, Ukraine, and Uzbekistan. This support encompassed a diverse range of interventions tailored to each country's needs, resulting in reductions in release times for cross-border operations, increased effectiveness in Risk Management, improved compliance with the World Trade Organization Trade Facilitation Agreement, fortified organizational development, enhanced collaboration with the private sector, and the implementation of international standards and best practices, among others.

The ceremony was conducted in a hybrid format and gathered 40 participants, including a representative from SECO Headquarters, the WCO Deputy Secretary General, the WCO Capacity Building Director, delegates from beneficiary Customs administrations and Swiss cooperation offices, the Ambassador of El Salvador in Belgium and Luxembourg, and representatives from the embassies of Mongolia and Uzbekistan in Belgium, alongside WCO colleagues and the GTFP team.

SECO and the WCO are pleased to welcome Phase II of the SECO-WCO Global Trade Facilitation Programme (GTFP), envisaging its continuation as a promoter for advancing international trade, bolstering Customs' organizational capacities, promoting the adoption of international standards and best practices, and fostering continuous learning and cooperation.

For more information on the GTFP, please contact capacity.building@wcoomd.org