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Regional consultations on WCO modernization with the AMS region

On 16 November 2022 the WCO conducted its fourth regional consultation on WCO modernization, this time with the Americas and Caribbean (AMS) region. Twenty-six Member administrations participated in this consultation, kindly hosted by the Peru Tax and Customs Administration (SUNAT) in Lima and conducted in a hybrid format.

The AMS regional consultation was chaired by the WCO Deputy Secretary General, Mr. Ricardo Treviño Chapa, with introductory remarks provided by Mr. Luis Enrique Vera Castillo, Superintendente Nacional of SUNAT and Vice-Chair for the AMS region. The discussions again focused on seven specific issues concerning the current internal situation of the Organization and potential improvements for moving towards overall WCO modernization.

In his introductory remarks, the Vice-Chair for the AMS region expressed his appreciation for the timeliness of this consultation exercise, set against the backdrop of the WCO’s 70th Anniversary. He considered this work to be extremely important and requiring the full contribution of Customs administrations from all around the world, in order to make the Organization agile and responsive in a global environment characterized by uncertainty and constant change. The Deputy Secretary General thanked SUNAT for its support and leadership in the organization of this consultation and for hosting it on its premises.

The participants from the AMS region actively contributed to the agenda items. They agreed that more consistency in the Organization’s processes, especially through the implementation of a comprehensive corporate approach, would greatly benefit the WCO at multiple stages. They particularly stressed the need to develop further the culture of performance measurement within the Organization and to use the Performance Measurement Mechanism currently being devised as a basis for increased transparency and accountability. While acknowledging the relevance of questioning the functioning of the WCO, they called for caution and proper analysis of the potential impact and consequences of any decisions before moving forward. They also advised the Organization to set a clear order of priority for what needed to be done in order to guarantee progress and results.

The WCO Modernization Plan is one of the key deliverables specified in the Strategic Plan 2022-2025 for responding to the needs identified in the Focus Area “Governance and accountability”. These regional consultations will be pursued, with the objective of presenting a Modernization Plan to the Policy Commission and Council in June 2023 for endorsement.

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