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WCO successfully supports the Sierra Leone Customs to complete a Time Release Study (TRS)

23 noviembre 2016

Following an invitation from the National Revenue Authority (NRA) of Sierra Leone, WCO successfully completed a Time Release Study (TRS) workshop in Freetown on the 24-28 of October 2016. This Workshop was facilitated by two experts from the WCO Secretariat and Kenya Customs who shared their knowledge of the TRS and their experience on developing process mapping and the use of WCO TRS software. The core objective of the mission was to support the NRA in building capacities to conduct a TRS in line with Sierra Leone’s commitments under the World Trade Organization (WTO) Agreement on Trade Facilitation (TFA). The mission was the third delivery under Sierra Leone’s Mercator Implementation Plan, which defines a Sierra Leone-specific programme of collaboration between the WCO and the NRA under the auspices of the tailor-made track of the WCO Mercator Programme. The mission was made possible with the generous financial support of the Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC) of the United Kingdom as part of the HMRC-WCO-UNCTAD TFA Capacity Building Programme.

The workshop allowed participants to gain an increased understanding of the concept of TRS as a key instrument to identify bottlenecks in the clearance process and its importance for trade facilitation. Moreover, participants got the opportunity to strengthen their knowledge in performance management and how this can be facilitated by the WCO TRS tool. The participants represented both Customs officials as well as a broader group of stakeholders from the public and private sector involved in the clearance process of goods, such as brokers’ and freight forwarders; associations, port authorities and shipping lines.

The mission concluded in the drafting of process maps for various Customs procedures which will be refined with time. It also led to the establishment of a work programme including specific deadlines for the completion of a first TRS in Sierra Leone of which one of the next steps under the country’s tailor-made Mercator Implementation Plan. The WCO looks forward to this continued collaboration.