A-CIP Programme: Palestine Customs Initiates Internal Affairs Unit

23 May 2024

In an essential step toward enhancing integrity and combating corruption, Palestine Customs benefited from a workshop to establish an Internal Affairs Unit, with support from the World Customs Organization (WCO) Anti-Corruption and Integrity Promotion (A-CIP) Programme. This initiative, part of a broader agreement with the Norwegian Agency for Development Cooperation (Norad), draws on previous efforts in the country to enhance integrity, in line with the Revised Arusha Declaration.

Thanks to support from the Jordan Customs Department and their Regional Training Center, the workshop welcomed five senior Palestinian officials and six Jordanian Customs staff, focusing on the essential building blocks for a new unit, such as governance, mission, and operational processes. Expert guidance was provided by U.S. Customs and Border Protection and the Mauritius Revenue Authority, who helped develop a strategic roadmap and action plan.

This workshop aimed to identify internal resources, define critical unit components, and create a business case to secure management support and necessary resources. Additionally, it will foster regional cooperation by sharing insights and solutions with Jordanian Customs, enhancing understanding and tackling shared challenges. Expected outcomes of this gathering include a detailed action plan for the new unit, ensuring it is equipped to uphold transparency and accountability within Palestine Customs.

Furthermore, based on guidelines developed by the WCO, the experts assisted the Palestinian Customs in adopting best practices in the investigative process by designing their own form for the complaint assessment, investigation plan, interview script, and record of sanction. Through case studies, the participants demonstrated their understanding of using the various forms.

Finally, Palestinian Officials had the opportunity to tour Jordan Customs' headquarters and observe their best practices for internal control, investigations, and the central CCTV control room.

The WCO A-CIP Programme provides technical assistance and capacity-building support to WCO Member administrations implementing integrity-related initiatives in line with the WCO Revised Arusha Declaration. For more information, please contact capacity.building@wcoomd.org.