Papua New Guinea Customs Service discusses for further enhancement of SEZ management

06 June 2024

The WCO National Workshop on Free Zones/Special Economic Zones (SEZ) for the Papua New Guinea Customs Service (PNGCS) was held from 27 to 31 May 2024 in Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea, under the sponsorship of the Customs Cooperation Fund - China (CCF-China). A total of 30 Customs officers from various Departments benefited from the practical presentations and discussions on SEZs.

The workshop's objectives were to support Customs operations in SEZs and to provide capacity-building resources for PNGCS officers.

During the workshop, participants were provided each core element of the WCO Practical Guidance on Free Zones and confirmed the current procedures and controls of PNGCS with utilizing a check list provided in Free Zone Guidance. These presentations helped participants understand the potential risks in SEZs, the importance of Customs’ role in SEZs, and to conduct a gap analysis between the international standards provided by the WCO and PNGCS’s current procedures and controls. Participants were also provided with other Customs administrations’ good practices to compare their procedures and controls with these good practices so they could identify their own challenges.

The active participation and contribution of participants resulted in a successful workshop that assisted participants in enriching their knowledge about SEZs. Active discussions identified the challenges concerning Customs operations in SEZs and possible solutions to the identified challenges. The outcome of the discussions and the suggestions made by the WCO experts will be utilized for consideration of developing/revising laws and regulations as well as future actions that should be taken to further enhance the management of SEZs.

In her closing remarks, Mrs. Roselyn Tei-Witne, Assistant Commissioner Compliance and Procedures, expressed her appreciation to the WCO, CCF-China and the WCO experts for organizing this workshop to assist PNGCS in implementing Customs operations in SEZs in accordance with international standards.