Terms of Reference for the Enforcement Committee

Confirmed by the Council - June 2003

Updated - June 2009

Established : 1983

Duration : Unspecified

1. Mandate

The Enforcement Committee acts under the overall direction of the WCO Council and Policy Commission, with administrative support provided by the WCO Secretariat.
The mandate of the Enforcement Committee (as described in Chapter I, Rule 1, Rules of Procedure of the Enforcement Committee) is to initiate work and studies on enforcement, with the object of enabling the Council to discharge the obligations of the Convention establishing the Customs Co-operation Council in accordance with the general purposes of the Convention.
The Committee is also to perform such tasks as may be assigned to it under the terms of the Conventions adopted by the Council, in particular the Convention on mutual administrative assistance for the prevention, investigation and repression of Customs offences (Nairobi Convention).

2. Membership

As described in Chapter II, Rule 2, Rules of Procedure of the Enforcement Committee, the Committee shall comprise representatives of Council Members and of Customs or Economic Unions which are Contracting Parties to the Nairobi Convention. However, such Unions shall not have the right to vote. Each Member and each such Union may nominate one delegate and one or more alternates to represent it.

The representatives should be officials responsible for and specialized in enforcement matters. They may be assisted by advisers.

3. Purpose and Scope

The purpose of the Enforcement Committee is to :

  • Contribute to the strategic direction of work done by the WCO in compliance, control and intelligence within the framework of the WCO Strategic Plan in areas such as security, the intelligence function, commercial fraud, mutual administrative assistance, illicit drug trafficking, money laundering, electronic crime, smuggling, environmental crime, transnational organized crime, firearms and, where applicable1, the transborder movement of people and goods
    affecting health and safety.
  • Promote the exchange of views, experiences and best practices and facilitate improved co-operation between Customs administrations, the business/private sector and governmental and non-governmental organizations;
  • Promote improvements in the effectiveness of Customs through technology, communication and legal instruments;
  • Task and provide strategic direction to Enforcement Committee working bodies;
  • Promote measures which will increase the effectiveness of the Regional Intelligence Liaison Offices (RILOs);
  • Provide strategic support for WCO technical assistance programmes by Members and international donor agencies;
  • Promote measures which will improve the strategic direction and focus of Members in order to achieve results and improve outcomes.

4. Key Deliverables

The Enforcement Committee will :

Report to and make recommendations to the Council on the matters within its area of responsibility;
Take decisions, or initiate or undertake action in the areas for which it is responsible.

5. Means of Operation

The Committee may :

Establish, in accordance with WCO Council guidelines, and direct the work of, such working bodies as may be desirable for purposes within its competence;
Co-operate, promote joint projects, or share information and experiences, with relevant law enforcement agencies, business/private sector organizations and international organizations related to commercial fraud, smuggling and intelligence development.

6. Resources Required

Travel and other associated costs to be borne by participants’ administrations.

Meetings to be facilitated by the WCO Secretariat.