WCO - World Customs Organization

01/24/2023 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 01/24/2023 08:30

WCO Mercator Programme diagnostic mission conducted for Bahamas Customs and Excise Department

At the request of the Acting Comptroller of the Bahamas Customs and Excise Department (BCED), the WCO, with funding support from the WCO Customs Cooperation Fund (CCF) Reserves, conducted a diagnostic support mission in Nassau, Bahamas, during the period 9 to 19 January 2023.

The mission focused on BCED's overall reform and modernization agenda, particularly its ability to implement effective trade facilitation measures in line with international standards and best practices, such as the WCO Revised Kyoto Convention (RKC) and the World Trade Organization (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA).

Whilst The Bahamas is not yet a full member of the WTO, having been awarded WTO Observer status in 2001, it is envisaged that this diagnostic assessment will continue to assist them to further prepare for full Membership in due course.

The activity was conducted under the framework of the WCO Mercator Programme and included discussions with BCED's senior Customs management team and relevant Section and Unit Heads, along with stakeholders from both the public sector and the business community.

Through active engagement, the WCO team was able to make a comprehensive stock-taking assessment of the situation within the Customs administration with regard to the effective implementation of trade facilitation measures, highlighting areas where good progress had already been achieved and also identifying areas where further capacity building and technical assistance support is required.

In collaboration with the WCO, BCED developed a multi-year (MY) Mercator Implementation Plan containing activities and key performance indicators that will now form the basis for future actions. The Mercator Implementation Plan will also facilitate enhanced engagement with government partner agencies and private sector stakeholders involved in trade facilitation reforms.

For more information, please, contact [email protected]