Fourth Annual WCO Technology and Innovation Forum : Leveraging Technologies to Build Efficient, Secure, Transparent & Resilient Global Supply Chains

14 noviembre 2013

Press Release [es]

Senior managers from governments, law enforcement, Customs and the private sector from around the world gathered at the 4th annual World Customs Organization (WCO) Technology and Innovation (TI) Forum in Buenos Aires, Argentina from 12-14 November 2013. The WCO organized the event in cooperation with Argentina’s Federal Administration of Public Revenues (Administration Federal de Ingresos Públicos - AFIP).

Over 450 delegates from more than 60 countries attended and discussed the use of technology aimed at building efficient, secure, transparent and resilient global supply chains.

The TI Forum provides a unique opportunity for information sharing and co-operation between the public and private sector on emerging technologies and innovations used by Customs administrations and other border agencies. Participants forged new partnerships and encouraged the exchange of best practices in the use of technologies and innovations. Over 20 companies showcased their solutions to participants at the Forum’s exhibition hall.

In the Forum’s opening speech, Argentina’s Federal Administrator of Public Revenues, Ricardo Echegaray, underscored the strategic importance that technology has played in the advancement of his administration and explained that investment in advanced technologies to support Customs remains a high priority for AFIP. He added that it is imperative to build strong public-private partnerships in order to foster legitimate trade and effectively combat fraud, and that AFIP is committed to strengthening these relationships. In closing, Mr. Echegaray expressed his gratitude to the WCO for providing leadership and support for Customs modernization.

The TI Forum included strategic discussions on the future of borders, effective decision-making empowered by technologies, increasing transparency in cross-border transactions, the use of surveillance and enforcement technologies, building resilience in global supply chains, and good practices in the use of technologies to address emerging and evolving risks.

The Director General of Argentine Customs, María Siomara Ayerán, stressed that being the Forum’s host administration reflects AFIP’s recognition that innovation, technology and knowledge are forces driving Customs progress and contributing to economic competitiveness as well as the well-being of citizens and respect of environmental and social responsibilities. She added that although Customs administrations work under different conditions and differ in terms of size, geographical location, trade volumes going through their respective countries and resources available, they all share the common challenge of achieving optimal results in terms of control, security and agility in which technology plays a fundamental role.

"Innovative and agile responses supported by modern technologies are needed not only to facilitate legal trade, but also to combat illegal trade more effectively", said the WCO Secretary General, Kunio Mikuriya. "In these highly competitive times when both legitimate businesses and smugglers continue to re-invent their operational models by leveraging technological advances, this Forum provides us with an invaluable opportunity to remain relevant and responsive and thus help build efficient, secure, transparent and resilient global supply chains."

Secretary General Mikuriya also thanked Argentina’s Federal Administration of Public Revenues for its initiative and support in organizing the TI Forum in the beautiful and dynamic city of Buenos Aires. In addition, he thanked the sponsors and exhibitors for their active participation and emphasized that the Forum was another successful manifestation of strong Customs-Business partnership.

The outcomes of the Fourth Forum, including presentations given during the event, will be posted on the Events section of the WCO website in due course.