WCO SECRETARY GENERAL
International Customs community comes together united in celebrating International Customs Day, which officially falls on 26th January of each year. This special day enables WCO Members, the WCO Secretariat and Customs’ worldwide partners to dedicate themselves to taking forward a particular theme. Thus, throughout 2020, under the slogan “Customs fostering Sustainability for People, Prosperity and the Planet,” the Customs community will be focusing on the contribution of Customs toward a sustainable future where social, economic, health and environmental needs would be given top priority. Against this background, Customs’ contribution to sustainability can be illustrated such as serving the people by building safe and secure societies. ensuring prosperity by reducing trade barriers for just and inclusive societies, and protecting the planet and ensuring its sustainability for future generations.
The 2019 WCO Environmental Scan highlights the fact that, in order to move towards a sustainable society, whose development promotes a deep respect for the environment, Customs, in partnership with relevant stakeholders, must (wherever possible) perform its activities with a strong and sustainable mindset. Thus, by means of various tools and specific programs, the WCO is calling for various actions to be taken which are the consistent and transparent application of Customs procedures and a proactive approach by Customs to promote and facilitate simplification and harmonization of these procedures, while strengthening inter-agency cooperation.
It is therefore recommended that Customs’ practices and methods should be aligned with the WCO’s tools and instruments, which have been incorporated into several packages: the Revenue Package, the Economic Competitiveness Package, the Compliance and Enforcement package, and the Organizational Development Package.
Finally, I am fully convinced that Customs administrations and the wider Customs community will rise to the occasion, fully committed to actively promoting their efforts and activities aimed at fostering “Sustainability for People, Prosperity and the Planet” that includes sharing relevant practices and activities with others at WCO meetings and in key WCO publications.
Wishing you all happy International Customs Day.