Joint Communique: International Customs Day

The 26th of January is International Customs Day. ESC together with other associations represented in the Trade Contact Group (the group established by the European Commission to provide advise to Directorate-General for Taxation and Customs Union) unite with Customs Officials globally to commemorate the inaugural meeting of the Customs Co-operation Council in Brussels in 1953.

“We express our appreciation to Secretary-General Saunders of the World Customs Organisation for adopting the theme “Customs Engaging Traditional and New Partners with Purpose.” For more than two decades, we have played a crucial role in providing valuable expertise to the European Commission, Member States’ customs authorities, and other institutional stakeholders. Our members endorse forward-thinking solutions by offering a high level of regulatory, logistical, subject matter and IT knowledge to their institutional counterparts. This active contribution aligns with important goals such as trade facilitation, border security, and the resilience of global supply chains.”

In 2024, at the European regional level, another pivotal year for customs lies ahead. The European Commission has presented a package of proposals to reform the Union Customs Union. The first quarterly CBAM report is due by January 31st and obligations under the deforestation legislation are imminent. Additional EU legislation with significant impact on Customs and trade is in the pipeline. Simultaneously, essential eCustoms systems within Member States are set to go live in the next twelve months.

The success of all the above mentioned initiatives is highly dependent on the amount and the quality of trade involvement prior to adoption and implementation. As such, trade consultation proves to be more critical than ever so that legislation can be implemented successfully and meet its objectives. Collaboration with the trade community is the common denominator to ensure effective customs legislation, well-functioning IT systems, and the achievement of customs’ goals for a safe, prosperous, and inclusive future.

The parties signed the Joint Communique are: European Shippers’ Council (ESC), Airlines for Europe (A4E), BusinessEurope, European Association for Forwarding, Transport, Logistics and Customs Services (CLECAT), Confédération Internationale des Agents en Douane (CONFIAD), German Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DIHK), the European Community Association of Ship Brokers and Agents (ECASBA), European Express Association (EEA), European Smoking Tobacco Association (ESTA), EuroCommerce, the European Alliance of customs-related service providers (EuroTradeNet), and Association of European Public Postal Operators (PostEurop).

For more information, please see the joint communique here.