The ceremony funded by the Her Majesty’s Revenue and Customs (HMRC), will expose participants to designing of the roadmap for the completion of the accession process.
Addressing the opening ceremony, Yankuba Darboe, Commissioner General of The Gambia Revenue Authority (GRA), emphasised the importance of the forum, which he said, is to take stock of the progress made in their bid to complete The Gambia’s Accession to the Revised Kyoto Convention.
The forum, he added, would also help in designing the roadmap for the completion of the accession process.
“As you may be aware, The Gambia ratified the Kyoto Convention in 1974, almost a year of its coming into force. However, since the entry into force of the Revised Kyoto Convention (RKC) in 2006, The Gambia remains one of the few countries yet to ratify the Convention despite the numerous benefits that can be derived from ratifying the Convention.” CG Darboe stated.
GRA boss explained that the WCO did not shy away from reminding them about this fact any time The Gambia attend meetings at the WCO headquarters in Brussels.
Commissioner Darboe expressed his institution’s determination to end this undesirable state of affairs, noting that in a bid to speed up the accession process, the management of GRA set up a steering committee in 2019 to kick-start the accession process.
“After the inauguration of the Committee, the COVID-19 pandemic hit the world and this took its toll on the timeline for achieving this objective. Since its setting up, the RKC Committee has engaged the relevant stakeholders in the process and together designed a roadmap for the process. This workshop today is a culmination of the hard work of the Committee and the various stakeholders, and it demonstrates the seriousness with which they have taken this assignment. I wish to commend them for a good job so far and as we look forward to the end of the road on this assignment.”
He called on participants not to relent on their laurels until the submission of the instrument of ratification to the WCO in the shortest possible time.
“Even though the pandemic was determined to stall this process, this online workshop should be a manifestation of your resolve to get this assignment done. Acceding to the RKC brings enormous benefit to The Gambia. As the foremost WCO convention on the simplification and harmonisation of Customs procedures, it will no doubt improve and enhance trade facilitation; provide international trade with predictability and efficiency that it requires and it will lay a solid foundation for reforming and strengthening our Customs legislations and standardising them with WCO best practice.” he added.