By Ofeliya Afandiyeva
Representatives of Azerbaijan’s State Customs Committee and the Federal Customs Service of Russia have discussed regional issues as well as projects that will be implemented during Azerbaijan’s chairmanship of WCO Europe Region.
The meeting was held on the sidelines of the 82nd Session of the Policy Commission of World Customs Organization held in Seoul, South Korea on December 3-5.
Azerbaijan was represented by a delegation headed by the First Deputy Chairman of the State Customs Committee, major-general of customs service Ismayil Huseynov, local media reported.
The 82nd Session of the Policy Commission of World Customs Organization was opened by the KCS Commissioner, Mr. Yungmoon Kim, who emphasized the value of the work of the WCO for the Customs community and stressed more particularly the importance of the use of the latest technologies by Customs.
During the three-day session, the Policy Commission discussed a wide range of subjects, including the strategic review of the Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (Harmonized System (HS)), Free Trade Zones; cruise ships, Customs-Financial Intelligence Units (FIU) cooperation, capacity building and the use of technology and data analytics, the 2020 Environmental Scan, and the WCO Communications Strategy.
In addition, the delegates also discussed progress made in the area of e-commerce, as well as gender equality and diversity, including potential actions to be implemented by the WCO in the near future. Furthermore, the WCO theme for 2020 was highlighted.
The Policy Commission also received progress reports on several ongoing programmes and initiatives, including the four WCO Packages - Economic Competitiveness, Compliance and Enforcement, Revenue, and Organizational Development. These topics will be followed up over the coming months and the Outcomes of the Policy Commission session will shortly be made available on the WCO Members’ Website.
It should be noted that Azerbaijan was elected WCO deputy chairman of Europe Region for a period of two years by Europe Region Heads of Customs Conference held in Saint – Petersburg on April 28, 2019.
WCO Political Commission is formed from a limited number of members. The Political Commission presents initiatives on various policy measures, projects and procedures for more effective decision-making by the WCO Council, where all member customs services participated. Currently, the WcO Political Commission, based on a regional division principle, includes 17 states from six regions, chairpersons as well as representatives of the Audit Committee and the Finance Committee as observers.
Note that aforementioned organization founded as Customs Co-operation Council (CCC) in 1952 and transferred to WCO in 1994.
Today, WCO Members are responsible for processing more than 98 percent of all international trade.
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