WCO and UN-OHRLLS call for trade and transit facilitation during the COVID-19 pandemic
Recognizing the specific challenges faced by Landlocked Developing Countries (LLDCs), on 29 May 2020 the United Nations High Representative for the Least Developed Countries, Landlocked Developing Countries and Small Island Developing States (HRLLS), Ms. Fekitamoeloa Katoa ‘Utoikamanu, and the Secretary General of the World Customs Organization (WCO), Dr. Kunio Mikuriya, issued a joint statement calling upon LLDCs and transit countries to maintain the continuity of international and regional supply chains during the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We encourage LLDCs and transit countries, as well as regional organizations, to support the smooth functioning of transit, transport and trade corridors and ensure freedom of transit in line with the relevant provisions of the Revised Kyoto Convention and the guiding principles outlined in the WCO Transit Guidelines” the statement says.
The United Nations Office of the HRLLS and the WCO commit to work closely with LLDCs, transit developing countries and other relevant regional and international organizations to support efficient transit and effective trade facilitation to enhance faster and easier movement of imported medical and food supplies to fight COVID-19 as well as to enhance integration of LLDCs in global and regional trade. In addition to mitigating the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, these efforts will support the implementation of the Vienna Programme of Action for LLDCs for the decade 2014-2024 and the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.