April 27, 2020
ICC and WCO Partner to Facilitate Global Trade Action Amid COVID-19
The International Chamber of Commerce (ICC) and the World Customs Organization (WCO) have issued a joint statement calling for increased action on customs and trade facilitation to ensure an effective response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a joint statement, ICC Secretary General John W.H. Denton AO and WCO Secretary General Kunio Mikuriya say effective trade facilitation – based on international standards – will play a central role in enabling business continuity and renewed economic growth.
The statement calls for a coordinated customs response to the COVID-19 crisis – including through active participation in multilateral efforts and an open dialogue with neighbouring countries.
“We call on Customs administrations and other government agencies to keep trade flowing by maintaining the continuity of the international supply chain and simplifying and facilitating the Customs processes for essential medical equipment, medicines and food supplies – as well as key support personnel – so as to ensure an effective response to the pandemic and to protect lives throughout the world,” the leaders state.
ICC and the WCO have also agreed to coordinate efforts in response to COVID-19 and are partnering to explore potential opportunities aiming to keep trade flowing worldwide and to support strong recovery of the global economy.
To support its members and relevant stakeholders, the WCO has created a dedicated section on its website (view here) and has included several existing and newly developed tools to aid in the facilitation of supply chain integrity within the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.