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Basic training for Joint Port Control Units in Dominican Republic

On 10 October 2013 in Santo Domingo, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the World Customs Organization (WCO) in conjunction with different law enforcement Institutions of the Dominican Republic, including the Specialized Port Security Corps of the Ministry of Armed Forces; the Military Security Directorate of the Multi-modal Port of Caucedo; the Directorate General of Customs; and the National Narcotic Control Directorate, signed the Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) for the implementation of the UNODC-WCO Global Container Control Programme (CCP).

The Container Control Programme is an initiative created six (6) years ago to assist governments in the creation of sustainable law enforcement structures in selected seaports to reduce the risk of maritime containers to be exploited and used for illicit drug trafficking, organized crime and black market activities.

At the forefront of this innovative approach are the Joint Port Control Units (JPCUs) comprised of highly- trained analysts, equipped and trained to work together, in order to perform scientific and systematic risk profiles of containers that may pose a threat in for drugs trafficking, counterfeit of goods, tax evasion and other offenses. These procedures are performed by using proactive techniques and advanced information tools, resulting in minimal disruption of legitimate trade and increased efficiency in seizures.

Currently, the Programme has JPCUs in the main ports of eight (8) countries in the region (Ecuador, Panama, Costa Rica, Guatemala, Paraguay, Suriname, Guyana and Jamaica), and by the end of March the Dominican Republic will become the ninth country with operative JPCUs in Latin America and the Caribbean, out of nineteen (19) participating around the world.

The basic training that begins today with the presence of officials from the law enforcement Institutions of the Dominican Republic and with the participation of analysts from other countries where the Programme is being implemented, will provide knowledge and experiences needed to support the port security and the licit trade with focus on containerized cargo.  

This is just the first of a series of trainings programmed to create capability in the JPCU in the Port of Caucedo and the Port of Haina. These trainings will be delivered throughout the three years of implementation of this Programme as established in the Agreement signed by UNODC, WCO and the Dominican Republic.