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Virtual Workshop on Organizational Performance Measurement for the WCO Americas and Caribbean Region

22 febrero 2021

The WCO continues its series of regional workshops on the topic of organizational performance measurement. A Virtual Regional Workshop on the topic for the WCO Americas and Caribbean Region was successfully held from 9 February to 12, 2021, with the support of the SECO-WCO Global Trade Facilitation Programme. This important activity, opened by the WCO Deputy Secretary General, Mr. Ricardo Treviño, gathered over 50 participants both working in the field of strategic planning and implementation and field experts in 22 WCO Member administrations. Mr. Ricardo Treviño drew the attention of the participants to the recent WCO initiative for the establishment of a WCO Performance Measurement Mechanism (PMM). He underlined the ambition of the PMM to be feasible and relevant for each national administration, providing a politically recognized and evidence-based, scored assessment that can be used to improve the Customs performance and make an impact on the economic development and business environment at national and international level.

The Workshop participants were also welcomed by Mr. Werner Ovalle - Director General of Guatemala Customs and Vice-Chair for the WCO Americas and Caribbean Region. He expressed the appreciation and support of the Region for this initiative, aimed at fine-tuning the future WCO PMM and strengthening the capacity of the region in performance management.

Mr. Silvan Hungerbuehler, from the Swiss State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO), underlined the importance of having the future PMM as a key driver to measure performance, identify obstacles and meet the strategic objectives, thus contributing to the reduction of trade costs and boosting competiveness in the region.

SECO agreed to join forces with the WCO through the SECO-WCO Global Trade Facilitation Programme, having this topic as one of the key components of the cooperation, considering that while there is a multitude of programs and initiatives in the area of trade facilitation, especially in the international donor community, a comprehensive state-of-the art Customs PMM is still yet to be developed.

During this event, Members had the opportunity to exchange experiences and views on performance measurement, including its role for strategic decision-making, the development of key performance indicators (KPIs) and data collection. Furthermore, the participants took part in the ongoing efforts to develop the PMM, providing positive feedback on its current design and contributing to its elaboration through group exercises.

Some of the lessons learned include observing the different level of maturity of the Customs Administrations in the establishment of a performance measurement system; the necessity to balance the functionality, legitimacy and rigor of the  evaluation, as well as to assure its sustainability through necessary  adaptation and learning, making it a living WCO mechanism to assist the dynamic needs of strategic decision-making. Overall, the engagement of the participants resulted in a successful workshop and provided important insights that will help the WCO Secretariat fulfill its endeavor of developing this PMM for the benefit of its 183 Members.