The role of Customs presented in a WHO-WTO High-Level Dialogue on expanding COVID-19 vaccine manufacturing

23 julio 2021

At the invitation of the Director-Generals of the World Trade Organization (WTO) and the World Health Organization (WHO), the Deputy Secretary General of the World Customs Organization (WCO), Mr. Ricardo Treviño Chapa participated in a High-level Dialogue on “Expanding COVID-19 Vaccine Manufacture to Promote Equitable Access” that was held on 21 July 2021 under the Chatham House Rule.

The event was aimed at updating and broadening the information base on COVID-19 vaccine production and promoting common understanding on production capacity projections through dialogue with industry, civil society, WTO Members and other stakeholders. This is to result in a clear mapping of current and potential production capacity and ways of progressing towards equitable and sustainable access to COVID-19 vaccines worldwide through expanding and diversifying manufacturing, and strengthening regulatory systems, and identifying where further action may be needed.

The WCO Deputy Secretary General spoke in a session titled “Expanding Manufacture Through Addressing Regulatory and Supply Chain Obstacles” and presented the role of Customs and the WCO in facilitating and securing the cross-border movement of COVID-19 vaccines and related supplies and equipment, including vaccine manufacturing inputs and components.

“Following the publication by the WTO of the Joint Indicative List of Critical COVID-19 Vaccine Inputs developed as a joint effort by the WTO, WCO and other organizations, Member Customs administrations can use the list to prioritize and facilitate the border clearance of the these inputs that are critical for the manufacturing, storage, distribution and administering of COVID-19 vaccines”, said Mr. Treviño. “The WCO remains committed to continue the close collaboration with other international organizations and the pharmaceutical industry in view of supporting the global effort of ensuring equitable access to COVID-19 vaccines”, stated the WCO Deputy Secretary General in concluding his intervention at the High-Level Dialogue.