Workshop To Boost Regional Customs, Trade Statistics
European Union Ambassador to Fiji and the Pacific Andrew Jacobs opened the Regional Customs and Trade Statistics Workshop at the Fiji Revenue and Customs Authority (FRCA) Complex in Suva on Monday. The week long workshop from April 11 to 15 is organised by the European Union supported “Trade Facilitation in Customs Co-operation” programme which is implemented by the Oceania Custom Organisation Secretariat (OCO).
The workshop aims to strengthen the capacity of OCO Member customs administrations in customs data management, customs research and in national trade statistics. Ambassador Jacobs said the EUR35 million (FJ$83m) “Strengthening Pacific Economic Integration Through Trade” programme had been the EU’s flagship programme supporting regional economic integration in the Pacific. “Under this programme we have been supporting trade-related initiatives of regional organisations,
such as the Pacific Forum Islands Secretariat (PIFS), the Melanesian Speared Group (MSG), the Office of the Chief Trade Adviser (OCTA), the South Pacific Tourism Organisation (SPTO) and the Oceania Customs Organisation (OCO), ‘’ Mr Jacobs said. ‘’The EU has been supporting the OCO for several years and the current “Trade Facilitation in Customs Co-operation” programme has made an important contribution in developing modern customs legislation and streamlining customs processes and systems in the region.” The workshop is organised by OCO in partnership with the Fiji Revenue and Customs Authority (FRCA) and will bring together key stakeholders in the fields of customs and trade statistics, including the Pacific Community, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD), the World Bank, the Pacific Financial Technical Assistance Centre (PFTAC), PIFS, MSG, OCTA and NZ Statistics. Workshop participants include customs data and trade statistics managers from the 24 OCO customs administrations.
European Union Ambassador to Fiji and the Pacific Andrew Jacobs (seated fifth from left), with participants of the Regional Customs and Trade Statistics Workshop in Suva.