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Customs in the Pacific identify Revenue Collection as a priority topic to develop a Regional Experts Pool

04 febrero 2021

The WCO has been enhancing its support for the Small Island Economies (SIEs).  As part of this effort, the WCO, in cooperation with Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and Japan Customs, organized a “WCO/JICA Joint Sub-regional MTP Preparatory meeting for the Pacific Islands” on 26 January 2021.  The meeting took place virtually with the participation of six Customs administrations in the Pacific, namely Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Timor-Leste, Samoa, Tonga and Vanuatu, as well as the Oceania Customs Organization (OCO) Secretariat. 

With a view to stepping up its support to the SIEs, the WCO agreed with JICA, one of the active donors in the region, to seek a possibility to support Customs modernization in the Pacific through the “Master Trainer Program (MTP)”, the flagship program of the WCO/JICA Joint Project. The MTP is aimed at developing sustainable training capacity in the Pacific by 1) developing a pool of well-experienced trainers and (2) developing regionally featured training materials and programs to be used by these trainers.  Upon completion of the MTP, successful alumni are expected to become a regional asset and contribute to the sustainable economic development of the Pacific islands through Customs modernization.  

Following the successful organization of the “WCO/JICA Joint Sub-regional MTP Introductory Webinar” which took place in August 2020, and during which the Customs administrations in the Pacific agreed to take collaborative actions to launch the MTP, the “MTP Preparatory Meeting” was organized to discuss the latest capacity building needs in the Pacific and to identify the priority topic(s) to be covered by the program.  As a result of the active exchange of views and ideas, the Customs in the Pacific Islands identified revenue related topics, such as Customs valuation and HS classification, as priority topic(s) to launch MTP in the Pacific Islands. 

Both the WCO and JICA welcomed the active sharing of views and ideas during the meeting and agreed to continue their collaborative work to launch the MTP to ensure more sustainable capacity development in the Pacific Islands. 

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