Congratulations to the Customs fraternity on this special day which has been designated as International Customs Day by the WCO. This year the chosen theme, “Scaling up Customs Digital Transformation by Embracing a Data Culture and Building a Data Ecosystem,” is very fitting as the pandemic has acted as a most powerful catalyst to force many countries to accept technology as a fundamental part of their business culture.
Digitization of all Customs procedures is the way forward and a strategy to exploit all data is critical to assist with decision making. Today every Customs administration has an automated system that facilitates online submission of cargo and passenger information and declaration processing. However, to maximize collected data usage, Customs must use technological solutions to enhance its effectiveness to ensure compliance. Therefore, Customs must quickly develop or adopt existing analytical tools and enhance departmental, human resource capacity to assist with the daily, functional usage of data in all border-related activities.
This is essential to the success of all Customs administrations, since human and financial resources are diminishing due to the pandemic and years of economic decline in most countries. Customs administrations, throughout the pandemic and recovery effort, have placed much emphasis on, accurate revenue collection, improved trade facilitation, balanced and effective border security, and accelerated development of human capital. All these depend on a reliable, digitized data-ecosystem catering to Customs, the trade and regulating authorities concerned with international trade and the preservation of national health.
To assist Customs administrations and partner border agencies, CCLEC has developed a number of analytical, software tools to do just that. These are readily available to all members through the Secretariat.
On behalf of the CCLEC membership, best wishes to all Customs administrations form the Secretariat.