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Belgium Customs and the French Customs school of Tourcoing experience Virtual Reality (VR) assisted training at the WCO

28 marzo 2022

On 17th and 18th March 2022, a total of eleven officers from Belgium Customs visited the WCO and experienced the recently installed Virtual Reality (VR) assisted training programme funded by CCF-Korea.

The programme, developed and first installed at the Regional Training Centre (RTC) in Korea, trains Customs officials in the basic procedures of physical inspection on containerized cargo at a maritime port. Using a VR headset and controller, trainees enter a virtual world where they learn how to detect contraband items such as drugs, counterfeit goods and explosives smuggled in imported cargo. As part of the training, students practice reviewing documents for identifying fraudulent information, learn about the appropriate safety gear for performing inspections, and gain insight into the tools and resources used during inspections, such as, ZBV vehicles, scanners, magnifying glasses and detector dogs.

During a visit to the WCO on 1st March 2022, students from the National Customs School of Tourcoing also received a demonstration of the VR training, with one volunteer from the school having the opportunity to complete the training.

After experiencing the VR training, all participants generally gave very positive feedback, commenting on how realistic and immersive the training felt. Other trainees also noted that the VR programme could yield great results in terms of interactive training of field staff.

Following the encouraging feedback, the WCO Secretariat and Capacity Building Directorate plan to develop VR training in new topics beyond container inspections, and to install VR training systems in all 28 WCO RTCs, thanks to the financial support of CCF-Korea, to ensure that more Members can benefit from the VR training experience.

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