Regional Office for Capacity Building for the World Customs Organization Europe Region

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Blog Post: Multifaceted Prospects for Post-Pandemic Era

As the Covid-19 is shaping the current conditions in the world, trade and growth prospects for near future take a downturn. This is evident from the forecasts made by international organizations.The World Trade Organization estimates that the world merchandise trade will decrease in between 13% to 32% for 2020 depending on how bad or good the scenario will be.

COVID-19 Trade Facilitation Repository Launched

The World Customs Organization, the World Trade Organization, the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development, the Commonwealth Small States Office, the Global Alliance for Trade Facilitation, the International Air Transport Association and the International Trade Centre came together to bulid up the COVID19 Trade Facilitation Repository.

Hungary Removes Export Restriction on Propofol Containing Medicines

According to the National Tax and Customs Administration of Hungary (NTCA), on 14 May 2020, the National Institute of Pharmacy and Food Health lifted the export restriction previously introduced for the protection against coronavirus, which affected propofol-containing medicines from 3 April 2020 and certain medicines used as antibiotics and sedatives from 9 April 2020.

Azerbaijan Customs Seizes Undeclared Medicinal Goods

Medical materials and medicine preparations were seized by Azerbaijan Customs in a truck entering Azerbaijan. It is reported that the mentioned goods had not been declared to the customs beforehand.

Blog Post: Rising Tariffs and Renewed Risk for International Trade

With the spread of the new coronavirus disease worldwide, international trade and supply lines unavoidably affected by means of raising tariff rates. Whether or not this increase would solely include medical and protective equipment used in the fight against Covid-19, there is no doubt that remaining sectors are not excluded from the increases.

Moldova Introduces Trade Information Portal

On 5 May 2020, the Customs Service of the Republic of Moldova and the Ministry of Economy and Infrastructure of the Republic of Moldova launched, with the support of the USAID Structural Reforms Program in Moldova, the Commercial Information Portal for national and international business community.

WTO Publishes Report on the Role of e-commerce during the COVID-19 Pandemic

The WTO Secretariat has published a new information note looking at how the COVID-19 pandemic has affected e-commerce, including the implications for cross-border trade. It notes the increased use of e-commerce as consumers adapt to lockdowns and social distancing measures and draws attention to several challenges, such as the need to bridge the digital divide within and across countries.

UNCTAD Proposes Ten-Point Plan to Bolster Global Transport and Ease Tade during COVID-19

UNCTAD proposes 10 policy measures to cover maritime transport, customs operations, transit, transparency and legal issues, as well as technology to enhance paperless trade processes.

WCO Policy Commission and Council Meetings Postponed to December 2020

Announcing an important notice on the proposed working arrangements for the meetings impacted by Covid-19, the World Customs Organization (WCO) stated that focus has been placed on exploring alternative arrangements that would allow the WCO to continue advancing its work as international travel will very likely remain restricted for the following months.

Croatia Customs Warns Against Counterfeit Masks

Croatia Customs warns that the Covid-19 pandemic has led to a greater influx of banned and non-compliant goods, especially face masks, into the European Union. In many cases, these are also infringements of intellectual property rights in relation to face masks.

WCO Secretariat Shares Document on Efficient Communication Strategies During Crisis

In view of the global health emergency situation caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the World Customs Organization (WCO) Secretariat has published a “WCO Guidance on how to communicate during a crisis” to assist its Members in reacting to communication challenges posed by the global crisis.

European Commission Adopts Regulation on Export Authorisation

European Commission adopted a regulation on 23 April 2020 which makes the exportation of certain products subject to the production of an export authorisation. The regulation entered into force on 26 April 2020 and it will be in force for a period of 30 days.