13th ASEM Customs Directors-General and Commissioners’ Meeting opens in Quang Ninh

Wednesday, 2019-10-09 15:58:03
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The 13th ASEM Customs Directors-General/Commissioners’ Meeting opens in Ha Long city, the northern province of Quang Ninh, on October 9, 2019. (Photo: NDO/Quang Tho)
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NDO – The 13th Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) Customs Directors-General/Commissioners’ Meeting commenced in Ha Long city, the northern province of Quang Ninh, on October 9.

>>> Vietnam to host 13th ASEM Customs Directors-General and Commissioners Meeting

The event, which is the first of its kind is hosted by the General Department of Vietnam Customs (GDVC), brought together 53 delegations, who are customs directors-general/commissioners from ASEM member countries, as well as the Secretary General of the World Customs Organisation (WCO), representatives from European Union and embassies of ASEM member countries in Vietnam.

The working mechanism in the ASEM customs forum includes an annual meeting of the customs working group and the customs directors-general/commissioners’ meeting held every two years, alternating between the Asia and Europe, which serves as a forum to guide working groups in implementing action plans in specific stages approved by the ASEM customs directors-general/commissioners.

During the 2018-19 period, ASEM customs cooperation focuses on four main priorities adopted at the 12th meeting in Germany two years ago, including trade facilitation and supply chain security, fighting counterfeit goods and intellectual property rights enforcement, social and environmental protection, and community connection as well as ASEM vision.

These are also four priorities throughout ASEM's customs cooperation activities since 2009. Therefore, the discussions of the 13th meeting in Vietnam also revolved around these four priorities in order to propose, build and unify specific operational programmes to be included in the ASEM customs Action Plan for the 2020-2021 period. In particular, the two-day meeting also focuses on Vietnam's initiative on a green customs campaign to prevent illegal transportation of scrap and waste.

The 2020-2021 ASEM customs action plan is expected to cover eight goals, which are facilitating trade and online customs procedures, implementing the one-stop-shop mechanism, effectively managing the customs sector through high technology, promoting the green customs campaign to prevent the illegal transportation of scrap and waste, strengthening customs coordination to prevent counterfeit goods, enforcing intellectual property rights at border areas, connecting ASEM through information sharing, and promoting ASEM cooperation in transit operations and customs management over e-commerce.

The Ha Long Declaration issued at the meeting represents the commitment of the ASEM customs directors-general/commissioners to the goals and priorities of ASEM customs cooperation in the future, as well as the ASEM Customs Action Plan for 2020-2021 with operational programmes officially approved at the conference.

In addition to the task of reaching priority agreements on the 2020-2021 ASEM Customs Action Plan, a representative from GDVC said that Vietnam Customs would also focus on deploying communication campaigns and logistics activities to promote Vietnam's culture and country to regional and international friends.