The Revised Kyoto Convention Management Committee (RKC/MC) at its 19th Meeting held from 12 to 13 November 2018 discussed and endorsed the report presented by the Working Group on the Comprehensive review of the Revised Kyoto Convention (RKC) established by the RKC/MC and endorsed by the June 2018 sessions of the Policy Commission and the Council. The RKC/MC comprises of all Contracting Parties to the Convention as Members. Non-Contracting parties as well as representatives of some international governmental and non-governmental organizations are entitled to attend it sessions as observers. The status and the right of observers are determined by decision N° 305 taken by the Council during its 97th/98th sessions held in June 2001. The RKC/MC was established to consider the implementation of the Convention, any measures to secure the uniformity in the interpretation and application thereof as well as any amendments proposed.
The Revised Kyoto Convention (RKC) is the International convention on the simplification and harmonization of the Customs procedures as amended in 1999. This Convention is known as the blueprint for modern and efficient Customs procedures in the 21st century. The RKC entered into force on February 3, 2006 and has already 116 Contracting Parties, including Kiribati who is the very first non-WCO Members to accede to the RKC. Its increasing implementation is providing international commerce with the predictability and efficiency that modern trade requires.
In her opening remarks, Ms. Ana B. Hinojosa, the WCO Compliance and Facilitation Director, highlighted, among other things, several WCO ongoing efforts in the area of the accession to, and the implementation of, the RKC and she appreciated the increase in the number of Contracting Parties. She underlined that, while it was essential that the Convention keep pace with the latest developments and the changing environment in which Customs operates, it was equally essential that Developing and Least Developed Members’ States continue moving forward on the path of modernizing Customs procedures and practices and facilitating legitimate trade, whilst curbing illicit flows.
At this Meeting, the RKC/MC examined the report of the WGRKC, including its work programme, and finally endorsed the interim report as presented by the Chairperson of the WGRKC noting the contributions and interventions from delegates. During this meeting, the WCO Secretariat also shared some highlights on the Global conference on the comprehensive review of the RKC held in Brussels on 9 November 2018.
Overall, the RKC/MC Meeting generated animated discussion, active engagement and high level of commitment from the participants. The RKC/MC participants expressed their gratitude to the presenters from Georgia, New Zealand and Switzerland who shared their experiences on the accession to the RKC and the implementation of certain RKC provisions included in the General Annex and Specific Annexes as well as lessons learnt. They also thanked the Secretariat for presenting, on behalf of Kiribati and Vanuatu, and sharing their experience on the accession to the RKC.