BRUSSELS : On 8 June 2022, at the invitation of Mr. Ho Chee Pong, Director-General of Singapore Customs and 2022’s Chair of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) Directors-General of Customs Meeting, Dr. Kunio Mikuriya, Secretary General of the World Customs Organization (WCO), participated in the 11th ASEAN – WCO Consultation.
In his opening remarks, Dr. Mikuriya emphasized that further digitalization is deemed necessary in Customs to contribute to the global society while adding that Customs digitalization was one of the main topic at the “Digital ASEAN” session which he attended during the World Economic Forum in Davos last month.
Dr. Mikuriya also appreciated the ASEAN Progress Updates on Customs Integration and ASEAN Single Window, including the areas of regional Harmonized Tariff Nomenclature, Customs Transit System, AEO Mutual Recognition Arrangement, Low-Value Shipment and E-Commerce. He associated the progress in the ASEAN region to global initiatives and trends and expected further sharing of best practices from the ASEAN countries in areas mentioned above. Answering to the comment from Mr. Satvinder Singh, Deputy Secretary-General of ASEAN for ASEAN Economic Community, Dr. Mikuriya explained that Green Customs and circular economy are topics that WCO will explore throughout this year, and encouraged ASEAN Members to actively participate and contribute to the discussions, including at the Green Customs Global Conference scheduled for 27 and 28 June 2022.
In addition, based on the request from ASEAN Members, Dr. Mikuriya explained the effectiveness to utilize the CEN, nCEN and CENcomm to strengthen enforcement and compliance level through enhanced risk management, investigation and information-sharing function, and reiterated WCO’s support on developing regional information network in ASEAN region based on the nCEN.
The Head of the ROCB A/P also attended the Consultation and shared an overview of the Annual Work Plan 2022/2023 for the Asia/Pacific region, and also introduced the result of regional activities such as RTC Heads Meeting last October and RCL Heads meeting this May.
Representing the participants, Mr. Rey Leonardo B. Guerrero, Commissioner of the Bureau of Customs, Philippines, and Co-Chair of the 11th ASEAN – WCO Consultation, expressed their appreciation to the WCO and ROCB A/P for their explanation and continuous support on strengthening connectivity and capacity building in the region.