International Customs Day 2023
The World Customs Organisation (WCO) marks International Customs Day on 26th January every year. The occasion commemorates the WCO’s maiden session held in 1953. The day is dedicated to spreading awareness about the role Customs authorities play in the seamless movement of goods across borders and their importance in the cross-border regulatory apparatus. Every year, such authorities of WCO’s member administrations organise events to celebrate International Customs Day.
Customs authorities are essential in facilitating legitimate trade and helping governments levy tariffs and earn revenue from the movement of goods across international borders. These authorities also coordinate to prevent illegal trade in products such as body parts of endangered species like rhino horns, drugs and other prohibited substances.
International Customs Day 2023: Theme
This year, the theme of International Customs Day is ‘Nurturing the next generation: Promoting a culture of knowledge-sharing and professional pride in Customs.’ With this, the aim is to heighten the sense of belonging to the global Customs community.
International Customs Day 2023: Significance
The Customs monitors the inflow and outflow of all kinds of goods, from small personal items to valuable commercial shipments, in any country. In most nations, this authority’s aim is to bridge any potential gaps in monitoring to ensure citizens’ safety and compliance with the law. A smooth and solid Customs management system provides pleasant and secure international interactions for individuals. Customs across the world works towards building a sustainable future by fostering economic, social, and environmental needs in the process.
International Customs Day 2023: History
The WCO, previously known as the Customs Co-operation Council (CCC), was formed in 1952 in Brussels. An intergovernmental body, its primary function was to boost the efficiency and effectiveness of customs administrations. The council held its inaugural session on January 26, 1953. At the time, only 17 member countries participated in the event. The organisation has since grown to have 183 members. It administers around 98 percent of the world trade.
Important takeaways for all competitive exams:
- World Customs Organisation Founded: 26 January 1953;
- World Customs Organisation Secretary General: Kunio Mikuriya (January 2009 – present).