MEAs Enforcement Training Workshop for Customs Officers and Border Control Personnel. THE PRACTICAL ASPECTS OF IMPLEMENTING MEA CONTROLS THE ROLE OF CUSTOMS. Introduction. Although each of the MEAs has a different purpose, there are similarities between them at the operational level.
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THE PRACTICAL ASPECTS OF
IMPLEMENTING MEA CONTROLS
THE ROLE OF CUSTOMS
Although each of the MEAs has a different purpose, there are similarities between them at the operational level.
The types of issues facing a Customs or border control officer when implementing
one treaty might resemble those encountered in implementing other treaties.
Customs officers must be conscious of health and safety and should not approach a scene involving hazardous, toxic or dangerous goods, chemicals or materials before assessing the situation.
Based on that assessment, they would take the appropriate precautions
Most Countries have rules and procedures to apply when illegal shipments are identified and seized.
In the case of goods covered by the MEAs Customs must consult with the relevant authorities for expert advice or guidelines for treating with and storing such goods
Each of the MEAs may have special peculiarities
All treaties offer similar advice on communication:
Customs officers should be aware of the national contact point for each MEA to which their country is a Party, and they should receive regular updates from contact points on how to implement the treaties.
Customs and other border control personnel must be knowledgeable about the goods and the requirements covered by each of the MEAs.
This will assist them in distinguishing between legitimate and illegitimate transactions and take appropriate action
For all the conventions, it is important that Customs administrations are well informed of the relevant legislation and are consulted during preparation of the National legislation applying international obligations, and that they are aware of their duties and mandate under the national law for implementation of the international convention.
Some of the MEAs have no derogations or reservations. E.g. Basel, Biosafety
Most of the MEAs prohibit trade between parties and non parties.
In the case of the Biosafety Protocol a non party is required indirectly to abide by its terms if they are trading in living modified organisms with Parties.
Article 24 of the Protocol requires the trans-boundary movements of LMOs between Parties and non-Parties to be consistent with the objective of the Protocol.
Customs officers should check with the
relevant authority about how the trade rules of MEAs to which their country is party are implemented in specific zones such as free trade zones.
The combined effect of increased regulation and effective enforcement creates an incentive for persons to engage in illegal trade of environmentally sensitive goods. Smuggling methods are employed in an effort to “beat the system.”
It is essential that Customs Officers must be aware that smugglers of all kind attempt to utilize the same channels and methods
Abuse of Transit or Re-export Procedures
Inspection of cargo declarations and proper procedures for cargo accountability
Misdescription of Goods
Physical inspection of high risk consignments and comparing documentation with goods
Detection Method :
Thorough inspection of cargo consignments selected for examination
Detection Method :
Review invoices and compare quantities stated with actual quantities being imported
Un-canalised Points of Entry
Surveillance and patrols of vulnerable areas and known points of illegal activity. Law enforcement cooperation is vital
In House Reporting
Follow the internal procedures for preparing and presenting reports to relevant persons within your administration.
All cases of infringements should also be reported to the Designated National Authority, or Focal Point for their own records and to meet regional or international obligations.
Customs Officials may also channel such reports to the CCLEC who serves as the Regional Intelligence Liaison Office (RILO) for the Caribbean Area. The CCLEC in turn forwards the information to the WCO or INTERPOL using their established methods.
- Global Information and Intelligence Strategy (GIIS) and Risk Assessment Indicators
- WCO Customs Enforcement Network (CEN) and Regional Intelligence Liaison Office (RILO)
- Eco-message forms
Link to Learning Activity # 3
on Free Circulation