Nuclear Security Summit (NSS) in Washington D.C.

04 四月 2016

4 April 2016

The World Customs Organization (WCO) welcomes the outcomes of the Nuclear Security Summit (NSS), held in Washington D.C. from 31 March to 1 April 2016. The Washington Summit was the fourth, and final, which was organized under the NSS banner. It was attended by 52 countries.

As part of the NSS Communiqué, the Heads of States of the participating countries reaffirmed their commitment to the shared goals of nuclear disarmament, nuclear non-proliferation and peaceful use of nuclear energy. They also pledged to strengthen nuclear security and re-acknowledged the fundamental responsibility of States to maintain at all times effective security of all nuclear and other radioactive material under their control.

Following the evolving threat landscape, the NSS also underlined the increased need to pay more attention to prevent non-state actors from obtaining nuclear and other radioactive materials. It was acknowledged that this required enhanced capacity at national level and the NSS emphasized the importance of capacity building as one of the indispensable preconditions for increased nuclear security.

On this note, the NSS adopted an action plan to support the G7 Global Partnership Against the Spread of Weapons and Materials of Mass Destruction (Global Partnership) and urged it to strengthen its ties with international organizations and initiatives that support nuclear and radiological security. The World Customs Organization (WCO) was one of the international organizations which was highlighted in the action plan.

The WCO has been working closely with the Global Partnership and bilateral Donors in setting up its counter-WMD programmes. In addition to the implementation of the WCO SAFE Framework of Standards, a key international instrument in the field of supply chain security, the WCO’s recent efforts have focused on enhancing border security through new and innovative tools and technologies, partnerships, and enhanced cross-border operational coordination through initiatives such as Operation Cosmo - a law enforcement operation deployed in the aftermath of The Hague Nuclear Security Summit.

Following Operation Cosmo, the WCO launched its Strategic Trade Control Enforcement (STCE) Programme. The STCE Programme provides Customs administrations worldwide, for the first time ever, with a common capacity building initiative on WMDs and related materials. The initiative is aimed at raising awareness about WMDs and associated materials within Customs and Border Agency communities, and at providing countries with enhanced knowledge and tools to implement effective border controls to prevent illicit trafficking as outlined in international instruments such as the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1540.

"The WCO has increasingly been devoting resources and efforts to nuclear security and WMD-related matters since the first Nuclear Security Summit in 2010. The Organization has created several state-of-the-art tools under its Security Programme to enable better border security and international cooperation to counter smuggling and trafficking of nuclear and radioactive materials. The WCO remains committed to supporting our Members and the global nuclear security governance efforts through the deployment of these tools" declared Dr. Kunio Mikuriya, Secretary General of the WCO.

At the national level, Customs administrations are often considered as the first or last line of defence in relation to supply chains and supply chain security. Through its presence at international borders, Customs is also conducting a lot of enforcement activities on behalf of other regulatory agencies. This is the case in many countries in relation to cross-border movements of nuclear and radioactive materials. To ensure the inclusion of the Customs’ voice, both nationally and internationally, in nuclear-security-related discussions, the WCO will keep advocating Customs perspectives to ensure better coordinated and more coherent border security approaches.