Discussed Priority Areas
E-Commerce and Trade Facilitation
- Ensuring speedy and efficient clearance of packages at the border as volumes increase.
- Managing the transition from few large/bulk shipments to large low-value and small shipments.
- Managing risks resulting from reduced knowledge on small shipments
- Ensuring data quality on small shipments
- Determining processes, procedures, and roles for all stakeholders in an e-commerce transaction.
To alleviate these challenges, the 2018 WCO Annual Council Session resolved to adopt the Framework of Standards on Cross-Border E-Commerce. The framework, which was finalized in April of this year, is meant to be a comprehensive tool that Customs Administrations can leverage when developing their own e-commerce strategic and operational frameworks.
The WCO also discussed their Mercator Programme, which launched in June of 2014 and is meant to help Customs Administrations implement the requirements of the Trade Facilitation Agreement ratified by the World Trade Organization. Under the Mercator Programme, Customs Administrations are provided tailored forums and tools to help create Authorized Economic Operator (AEO) programs, reduce clearance times, coordinate border management across government agencies and with international partners, and develop single window processing systems.
The Council also agreed to set up a Working Group on a Comprehensive Review of the International Convention on the Simplification and Harmonization of Customs Procedure (Revised Kyoto Convention).