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Global AEO Conference

Leveraging cooperation and cross-border e-commerce among topics of discussion

Dubai Customs will host a series of high-level panel discussions during the 5th World Customs Organization (WCO) Global AEO (Authorized Economic Operator) Conference in Dubai. Set to be held from March 10 to 12, 2020 at the Festival Arena, the conference, which is taking place in the Middle East for the first time, will be hosted by Dubai Customs in cooperation with the World Customs Organization (WCO) and the Federal Customs Authority. The event will feature key sessions and round table discussions covering timely topics, including customs work and the development of a global customs system.

The panel discussions are scheduled to be staged on the first day of the exciting three-day event, which is being organized to provide an international platform for sharing of ideas and exploring opportunities required to take the flagship AEO program to the next level. The AEO program is instrumental in the creation of international standards for customs procedures and clearances for trading companies. It also helps promote better customs security systems and smoother trade facilitation among its members.

One of the panel discussions will focus on the important role of customs, government agencies, and inter-governmental institutions involved in international trade and supply chain security in the success of the AEO program.

Ahmed Mahboob Musabih, Director General of Dubai Customs, said: “During one of the panel discussions, the speakers will discuss and highlight the best practices and experiences to reinforce coordination. We need to establish a strong partnership among relevant authorities to ensure effective and efficient response to supply chain security challenges. Through our robust cooperation, we can also streamline processes by avoiding duplication of requirements and inspections and guarantee secure movements of goods in a manner that facilitates trade.”

Another panel discussion during the 2020 edition of the conference will focus on extending the scope of AEO programs to e-commerce operators, who include owners of micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) and individual sellers.

“Dubai Customs has been doubling its efforts to reinforce the UAE’s positioning as a global leader in customs, trade, and logistics. The upcoming Expo 2020 Dubai will show the world the city’s capabilities in this regard. Our commitment is also in line with Dubai Silk Road Strategy to achieve the vision of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai towards promoting Dubai‘s strategic position on the global trade map as a leading maritime, air and logistics hub for international trade flows. Much is in store for all participants in the global conference as top industry leaders will grace the event to share their expertise about key topics of relevance to global trade supply chain,” Musabih said.

According to Dubai Customs’ Director General, by making the AEO programs available to MSMEs and other e-commerce stakeholders and intermediaries, they can fully benefit from opportunities available in cross-border e-commerce activities. He said the move will also benefit e-commerce companies in the UAE that are seeking to penetrate the global market and take advantage of the growth prospects on the international stage.

He added: “In the United Arab Emirates and Dubai particularly, we continue to draw praises not only for our advanced trade policy and safe investment environment but also for our innovative customs system. These achievements are aligned with Dubai Customs’ long-term development strategy and in response to the directives of the UAE leadership towards getting ready for the next 50 years to ensure sustainable development and wellbeing for future generations. The conference will be an opportunity for us to showcase how we are supporting mutually beneficial global partnerships through innovations as a critical part of strengthening the local customs system.”

The conference is also seen to drive the global customs sector as well as strategically contribute to the fulfilment of Sustainable Development Goals 2030.  Dubai Customs said preparations for the WCO Global AEO conference are now in full swing in the emirate, which is one of the region’s leading trading hubs that is renowned for its major role in global trade activities.

The World Customs Organization represents 183 Customs administrations across the globe who are key decision makers in their respective countries in terms of building a stable, safe, transparent and predictable business environment. The WCO provides a platform for discussing issues related to various areas of the customs business such as harmonized system, rules of origin, customs valuation, law enforcement, facilitation, and capacity building.

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