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Americas/Caribbean Regional Heads of Customs Meeting

19 noviembre 2020

The virtual Meeting of the WCO Americas/Caribbean (AMS) Regional Heads of Customs was held on 16 November 2020.

In his opening remarks, regional Vice-Chair Ovalle Ramírez welcomed participants to the Meeting and presented an executive report on the various activities carried out by the region during the period from June to November 2020. After reminding the audience of the regional Vice-Chair’s duties, he went through the Work Plan established for the region and reported on the outcomes of coordination meetings held with the WCO, such as the regional approach and possible support for initiatives, as well as on participation in activities by the region’s Members. He also referred to the Central American Regional Time Release Study (TRS), the results of meetings held with regional organizations and of the webinar entitled "Situation and containment of COVID-19: measures and best practices for biosafety", as well as the social networks that had been developed.

Additionally, participants agreed on endorsing: (i) Argentina Customs’ request for “WCO Regional Dog Training Centre” status for its current Dog Training Centre; (ii) Peru Customs’ request for “WCO Regional Customs Laboratory” status for its Central Laboratory; and (iii) the reactivation of the Regional Strategy for Authorized Economic Operators.

With respect to communication tools, Guatemala presented its first newsletter which would focus on a specific country in the region: Honduras in this instance. All the region’s countries were invited to provide information for upcoming editions of the newsletter.

To conclude, regional Vice-Chair Ovalle Ramírez thanked the region’s 25 countries for their active participation in the Meeting, and urged them to continue working together for a digital, competitive and integrated AMS region.

The WCO welcomes the successful outcomes of this important regional meeting and looks forward to continue working closely with the regional Vice-Chair in support of the Americas/Caribbean region.