Wed | Aug 23, 2017

Regional shipping industry to tackle WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement at CSA conference

Published:Tuesday | October 6, 2015 | 10:54 AM
The ribbon being cut at the ceremonial opening of the Caribbean Shipping Association's 2014 Shipping Insight Expo held in collaboration with the Dominican Republic Shipping Association at the Barcelo Bavaro Beach Resort in Punta Cana.

The Caribbean Shipping Association's Annual General Meeting, Conference and Exhibition, to be held in Cartagena, Columbia, from October 19-21 is set to discuss, among other current topics, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) Agreement on Trade Facilitation (TFA).

This agreement was one of the main outcomes of the 9th WTO Ministerial Conference held in Bali, Indonesia in December 2013. The negotiations were specifically aimed at clarifying and improving three articles of the General Agreement on Trade and Tariffs related to fees, expedited release and clearance of goods.

The negotiations mandated the provision of effective technical and financial assistance and capacity- building to developing and least developed countries to assist them in implementing their obligations under the agreement.

Of equal interest to members of the regional maritime industry who will attend the conference, is the insights to be gained on the global customs perspective, as Hector Landeros, Regional Development Manager of the World Customs Organisation (Americas and Caribbean) has been confirmed as a presenter. This is important as the TFA contains twelve articles regarding Trade Facilitation and Customs Cooperation in Section I, ten articles on special and differential treatment for developing countries and least-developed countries in Section II and two articles on institutional arrangements and final provisions in Section III.

Delegates will be led in a discussion by Roger Hinds, immediate past president of the Shipping Association of Jamaica and CEO of Transocean Jamaica Limited. The balance between the needs of logistics services providers and the border protection and revenue collection foci of the regional customs administrations promises to make for enlightening and stimulating discussion.

(To download the CSA's conference agenda, visit http://www.caribbeanshipping.org/ )
Registration to attend the premier regional shipping conference is ongoing at:
https://www.regonline.com/builder/site/Default.aspx?EventID=1721180

The CSA, the voice of the Caribbean shipping industry, was established in 1971 to facilitate development of an efficient, viable Caribbean shipping industry. Conferences hosted by the CSA provide a forum in which matters relevant to the growth and development of Caribbean shipping are discussed.