The start of the Twinning project „Strengthening of the institutional and operational capacities of the Customs Administration“ was officially marked today, 19th December 2017, at the premises of the EU InfoCentre.
The Customs Administration of the Republic of Macedonia is beneficiary of this Twinning Project, and it is implemented by the Customs Administration of the Austrian Federal Ministry of Finance through the Agency for European Integration and Economic Development of Austria in partnership with the Customs Administration of the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Lithuania. The first Steering Committee of the Twinning Project took place the previous day 18th December 2017), at which the project activities were discussed and the manner how the project will be implemented.
The twinning project, funded by the European Union with 1.6 million Euros will be implemented for a period of 21 months and it is of great importance for both the Customs Administration and for the Republic of Macedonia, because it will enable additional strengthening not only of the administrative capacities of Customs, but its operational capacity also, thus contributing to a more efficient implementation of the EU legislation and bringing the country closer to the EU market and the Customs Union.
The Twinning Project is divided in the following components:
- Component 1: Customs Post-clearance Control and Audit;
- Component 2: Risk Management;
- Component 3: Laboratory and
- Component 4: Training
During the official project kick-off ceremony, Mr. Gjoko Tanasoski, Director General of the Customs Administration, pointed out that the Customs Administration as the final beneficiary of the EU funds is successfully realizing its basic mission – to fully and efficiently serve the Government and the citizens by protecting the state, its financial interests, health and life of people, maintaining a competitive economic environment and improving it and realizing the goals that would enable early start of the pre-accession negotiations for EU membership.
Mr. Jaromir Levicek, Head of Department at the Delegation of the European Union, expressed support for the efforts of the Customs Administration for approximation to the EU and the Customs Union, and said that he expects this to be a successful project that will improve the control, but also facilitate trade.
In his address, Mr. Peter Kitzberger – Austrian Police Attaché for the Republic of Macedonia pointed out that the Republic of Austria is always ready to assist the further steps of the Customs Administration of the Republic of Macedonia in the process of approximation to the EU.
The Twinning Project „Strengthening the Institutional and Operational Capacities of the Customs Administration“ is expected to enable implementation of customs reforms to prevent illegal trade in goods, facilitate trade and introduce further improvements in the field of the organization and management through the application of strategies that will enable further development, acceleration and simplification of customs procedures.