6-7 April 2021, Online
The WCO A/P 22nd Regional Heads of Customs Administrative Conference (RHCA) was held online from 6 to 7 April organized by the Customs and Excise of the Republic of Indonesia as Vice Chair. More than 50 Delegates from A/P regional Member administrations and Dr. Kunio Mikuriya, Secretary General of WCO, the RILO A/P and the ROCB A/P, as permanent observers, attended the Meetings and discussed important issues for the A/P region such as the endorsement of Regional entities, measures in response to COVID-19 pandemic, the progress with implementation of the WCO A/P Regional Strategic Plan (RSP) 2020-2022, and the Terms of Reference of Regional Private Sector Group Asia/Pacific (ToR of RPSG-AP).
Dr. Kunio Mikuriya provided the information on the latest WCO policy and initiatives. He highlighted the WCO’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic including the adoption of the “Resolution on the Customs Role in Facilitating the Cross-Border Movement of Situationally Critical Medicines and Vaccines”, development of the COVID-19 Action Plan as well as Guidelines on Disaster Management and Supply Chain Continuity and Operation STOP2 which aims to detect fake COVID-19 vaccine. Dr. Mikuriya also shared the discussions at the previous Counsel, Policy Commission and Finance Committee. Vice Chair and Members expressed appreciation for SG’s leadership and outstanding efforts made by the WCO Secretariat to assist Member Customs administrations even during the unprecedented pandemic.
Mr. Norikazu Kuramoto, Head of the ROCB A/P, updated Members on the ROCB A/P’s capacity building activities including the ROCB A/P’s response to the WCO virtual Workshops and Meetings as well as activities to enhance communication and information sharing among AP Members amid COVID-19. Mr. Kuramoto also made reports on the implementation of the Focus Area 3 (Capacity Building) of the A/P RSP 2020-2022. Members and RILO A/P expressed their appreciation for the ROCB A/P’s contribution to the A/P region, support for its activities and willingness to further collaborate with the ROCB A/P.
During the Meeting, RHCA endorsed the proposals of China on hosting the WCO Regional Customs Laboratory (RCL). Members have warmly welcomed the new RCL. Also, Members endorsed the ToR of RPSG-AP and expressed appreciation for the efforts undertaken by Vice Chair.
Active contribution by delegates and good meeting management by Vice Chair resulted in a successful and fruitful meeting even in a challenging time. The delegates called for further enhancing collaboration among AP Members, the WCO, ROCB A/P and RILO A/P.
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