Strengthening Partnerships at the 23rd Meeting of the ASEAN Directors-General of Customs

Held from 3 to 5 June 2014 in Da Lat, Vietnam, the meeting was chaired by Mr Nguyen Ngoc Tuc, Director-General of the General Department of Vietnam Customs.

Director-General of Singapore Customs Ho Chee Pong (second from right) attended the 23rd Meeting of the ASEAN Directors-General of Customs in Da Lat, Vietnam.

Director-General of Singapore Customs Ho Chee Pong, as the Outgoing Chair, highlighted Customs' important role in the establishment of the ASEAN Economic Community 2015 and the key achievements during the past year.

During the Meeting, the ASEAN Directors-General of Customs reviewed the work of the ASEAN Coordinating Committee on Customs, the Customs Procedures and Trade Facilitation Working Group, the Customs Enforcement and Compliance Working Group, the Customs Capacity Building Working Group, and the ASEAN Single Window Steering Committee.

Key achievements during the past year include the following:

a) Development of the ASEAN Customs Enforcement Bulletin Volume V and the ASEAN Customs Post Clearance Audit Bulletin Volume V.
   
b) On the ASEAN Agreement on Customs, eight Member States (up from five since the 22nd Director-General of Customs Meeting) have since notified or deposited instruments of ratification with the Secretary General of ASEAN upon the completion of their internal procedures.
   
c) 13 (up from 11 since the 22nd Directors-General of Customs Meeting) of the ASEAN Economic Community Scorecard deliverables for Customs Integration have been fully implemented by all Member States.
   
The Meeting endorsed the chairmanship of the ASEAN Customs Working Groups for the period of 2014-2016: Singapore chairs the Customs Procedures and Trade Facilitation Working Group, Malaysia chairs the Customs Enforcement and Compliance Working Group, and Indonesia chairs the Customs Capacity Building Working Group.

The Meeting also discussed issues about the ASEAN Single Window, ASEAN Customs Transit System and the setting of new directions for ASEAN Customs beyond 2015.

To strengthen Customs-to-Customs partnerships in the region, the Meeting also had a series of consultation sessions with the Customs administrations of China, Japan and Korea, and the World Customs Organisation. The Meeting also held consultation sessions with the US-ASEAN Business Council and the Conference of Asia-Pacific Express Carriers, to strengthen Customs-to-Business partnerships in the region.

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