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2010 WCO PICARD Conference - Partnership in Customs Academic Research and Development

Abu Dhabi, 23-25 November 2010

At the invitation of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) Federal Customs Authority, the 5th annual WCO PICARD Conference was held in Abu Dhabi from 23 to 25 November 2010. Around 200 participants from Customs and the academic world gathered to share their research outcomes relevant to the WCO agenda as well as developments in Customs professional education.

The conference was jointly organised by the WCO and INCU (International Network of Customs Universities) and co-hosted by the Centre for Customs and Excise Studies of the University of Canberra and the Abu Dhabi University Knowledge Group.
The conference was co-chaired by INCU President, Prof. David Widdowson (University of Canberra) and INCU Vice-President, Prof. Hans-Michael Wolffgang (University of Muenster) and included a range of speakers from Customs, academia, the World Bank and business.
At the opening session Director General Khalid Ali Al Bustani welcomed participants and stressed the importance of capacity building and its linkage to the PICARD Conference.


Announcing the 2011 WCO theme for International Customs Day, namely "Knowledge, a catalyst for excellence in Customs", Secretary-General Kunio Mikuriya explained the link between the current WCO working agenda and the topics of the PICARD Conference: revenue collection, the Customs-business partnership, the protection of the environment, and performance measurement.
Mr Lars Karlsson, Director of the WCO Capacity Building Directorate was admitted as an Honorary Fellow of the International Network of Customs Universities (INCU) and was awarded an official INCU Certificate of Membership.
Two universities, the University of Costa Rica and the International Business and Law Institute of Saint Petersburg, Russia were awarded WCO Certificates of Recognition certifying that their customs curricula comply with WCO Professional Standards for the Customs profession.

The 2010 PICARD Conference focused on the following specific issues.

Customs Business partnerships – examining the objectives and expectations of such partnerships, and ways to improve public and private sector performance through partnerships.

      Performance measurement – with a view to identifying appropriate methods to measure and benchmark Customs performance;
       Customs and Revenue Collection derived from Customs Duties, VAT, and other taxes on traded goods– with a focus on ways of mitigating revenue risks caused by misclassification and misdescription, under-valuation, over-valuation, origin fraud, informal trade, and corruption;

      The Impact of Climate Change on International Trade and Customs Management in the post-Copenhagen Era – the consequences of climate change policies on trade facilitation, revenue collection, and supply chain security with a focus on issues such as Border tax adjustments (BTAs), carbon leakage, VAT fraud on carbon credits, trade barriers to Clean Development Mechanisms (especially clean technologies).

For more detailed information about the conference, brochures pictures and other material please visit

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