28-30 May 2019, Kyoto, Japan
At the invitation of the WCO Secretariat, Mr. Kazunari Igarashi, Head of the ROCB A/P, attended the WCO Asia Pacific Security Conference held on 28-30 May 2019 at the Kyoto International Conference Center in Kyoto, Japan, where the International Convention on Simplification and Harmonization of Customs Procedures, a.k.a. Kyoto Convention as revised in 1999, was adopted in 1973. Nearly 70 high-level delegates from 25 Member administrations in the A/P region, as well as representatives from the partner organizations including UNOCD and ICPO, attended the Conference. The Conference was officiated with the opening remarks of Dr. Kunio Mikuriya, WCO Secretary General, Mr. Motoya Nakae, Director General of Japan Customs, His Excellency Ambassador Yamamoto, Ms. Izumi Nakamitsu, Under Secretary General and High Representative for Disarmament Affairs of the United Nations, and Mr. Krisada Chinavicharana, Director General of Thai Customs. Delegates actively discussed the pertinent topics on global security environment, security threats and Customs’ response, achievements in the Japan-funded WCO A/P Security Project and the future vision on the Customs’ roles and responsibilities in counter-terrorism. Delegates reaffirmed that the Customs has important roles in the counter terrorism, in particular in prevention and suppression of illicit trafficking in chemical substances used to produce improvised explosive devices, small arms and light weapons, and passenger controls. They further underlined the need for enhancing coordinated border management approaches at both national and international levels and the exchange of information and intelligence among the relevant stakeholders. Importance of striking right balance between trade and travel facilitation and border control was acknowledged along with the need for continued capacity building in a tailor-made manner. Delegates unanimously agreed to continuously raise the profile of Customs in this critical domain to contribute to the economic growth with the promotion and facilitation of legitimate trade in the years to come.
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