Strategic priorities of customs cooperation at the EU Eastern border will be discussed

23 October 2013, Last updated at, 12:10 EEST
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author: Reuters/Scanpix

On 24–25 October, the high-level seminar On Customs Cooperation at the Eastern Border of the EU, which is being organized within the framework of the programme Customs 2013 by the Customs Department under the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Lithuania and the European Commission, will take place in Druskininkai. In order to strengthen this cooperation, high-level events have been organized since 1999; the last high-level seminar took place in Kiev in October 2012.

The seminar will cover the strategic objectives of customs cooperation: developing of safe and fluid trade lines, including the possibility to exchange electronic information between the EU member states and the customs administrations of Eastern neighbours. Discussions will also cover the issues related to the improvement of the cooperation in the fight against the contraband of excise goods, and the EU Eastern neighbours’ preparation for accession to the Common Transit Convention.

The seminar is dedicated to evaluating the EU Eastern neighbours' customs progress in the creation of a system of authorised economic operators, the harmonization of national customs legislation with the EU’s legal acts, the simplification of customs procedures, the improvement of risk management, and the preparation for the accession to the Common Transit Convention.

Kunio Mikuriya, Secretary General of the World Customs Organization, the heads and experts of the customs administrations of the EU member states, candidate countries, and EU Eastern neighbours – Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Moldova, and Ukraine, Heinz Zourek, Director-General of the Directorate-General for Taxation and Customs Union (TAXUD), and other representatives of this DG and the European Anti-Fraud Office (OLAF) will participate in the event. Algirdas Šemeta, Member of the EC responsible for taxation, the customs union, statistics, audit, and anti-fraud, will also send an opening address.

The Seminar’s participants should adopt the final document regarding guidelines for further strengthening customs cooperation at the Eastern border of the EU.

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