With the passage of time, the role of Customs Administrations has diversified. Not only are Customs Administrations responsible for revenue collection but also for safeguarding society from possible threats to public health and security. The effective management of borders has become a complicated task due to rapid globalization and increase in international trade.
In order to underscore the need for Customs Administrations to contribute towards the facilitation of international trade, World Customs Organization (WCO) has chosen the theme “Security of the Business Environment” with the slogan of “A Secure Business Environment for Economic Development” for this year’s International Customs Day.
Since Customs administrations around the world interact with global supply chains, best international practices need to be adopted to ensure the seamless movement of goods across borders. This is enabled primarily through automation – a good example being FBR’s WeBOC system of automated cargo clearances. WeBOC places a large amount of useful data at the disposal of the Customs administration, enabling risk management to provide for a more predictable global trade landscape.
Securing the business environment involves the streamlining of Customs procedures, enhancing integrity, facilitating the movement of goods, conveyances and people, and combatting cross-border crime to prevent the shipment of illicit goods that endanger people’s health, safety and security. Customs administrations are expected to maintain a fine balance between the smooth flow of goods and the simultaneous protection of the nation’s borders from the entry of illegal and potentially dangerous items. The ability to quickly analyze information through data mining and predictive analysis is a necessary capability that customs agencies must possess and enhance for improved targeting and better deployment of customs inspection resources.
In the end, I wish to extend my warm felicitations to the officers and officials of Pakistan Customs on this auspicious occasion and hope that Pakistan Customs shall continue to follow the path of modernization and trade facilitation in order to ensure a safe business environment that encourages economic growth and development.