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WCO partners with the WTO to deliver an Advanced Course for Chairs of the National Committees on Trade Facilitation for Spanish speaking countries

06 avril 2017

The Spanish version of the WTO Advanced Course for Chairs of National Committees on Trade Facilitation (NCTFs) was held from 20 to 29 March 2017 at the World Trade Organization (WTO) in Geneva, Switzerland. The course benefitted 14 participants covering 13 countries and representing private and public sector agencies such as the Ministry of Trade and Customs Administration.

The WCO co-facilitated successfully the delivery of this workshop with other several major international organizations - the International Trade Centre (ITC), the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) and the World Bank Group (WB). In addition, representatives from the Global Express Association (GEA) and the International Air Transport Association (IATA) were also invited to provide their expectations regarding trade facilitation and simplification of international trade from the perspective of the private sector.

It was the final course of a series of advanced courses, which the WTO organized in French and English. The Spanish version was the first one to be organized after the entry into force of the WTO TFA Agreement on 22 February, 2017. This workshop further strengthened the cooperation between the agencies involved, demonstrating that a coordinated approach to support Members with their efforts to implement the WTO TFA is the best way forward.

With approximately 36 technical provisions to be implemented, some of which require the coordination of many agencies, the establishment of a National Committee on Trade Facilitation (NCTF) is one of the fundamental steps needed to build national consensus and to procure the overall benefits of the Agreement.

Henceforth, the purpose of the course was to enhance the knowledge of the Chairs of the NCTFs, to familiarize them with their responsibilities and to provide them with some of the tools to effectively engage with their internal/external stakeholders and the donor community. The course was largely based on the WCO material on Stakeholder Consultations and Resource Mobilization.

In addition, the course provided participants with an opportunity to build a network of contacts including the organizations that have programmes, tools and instruments that support the implementation of the TFA. At this occasion the WCO was given the opportunity to present its TFA Implementation Guide and raise awareness about the Revised Kyoto Convention, the SAFE Framework of Standards and the Time Release Study.

As deliverables of the course, the participants were able to develop action plans to establish and/or enhance the performance of their NCTF and to provide a follow-up of their own learning experience.

The WTO Advanced Course for Chairs of National Committees on Trade Facilitation (NCTFs) in its English version was held from 28 November to 9 December 2016, while the French version was conducted from 30 January to 10 February 2017, both at the World Trade Organization (WTO).

For more information about this activity, please contact: facilitation@wcoomd.org or capacity.building@wcoomd.org