File is not found

UNODC and Cuba signed the first Memorandum of Understanding

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the General Customs of the Republic of Cuba (AGRC) signed in La Havana the first Memorandum of Understanding (MoU). The document was signed on Tuesday 6th June, 2017 during the Container Control Programme (CCP) of UNODC and the World Customs Organization (WCO) Practical Training Sea.

The MoU signed by Deputy Chief of Customs of Cuba, Mr. William Pérez, and the Regional Coordinator of CCP, Mr. Bob Van den Berghe, institutes the implementation of the CCP Programme in Cuba. It will be developed through the establishment of two Port Control Unit (PCU): first in the port of Mariel (ZEDM) focusing on analysis of maritime cargo; the second PCU will be created in the cargo area of the International Airport José Martí, within the CCP Air framework.

CCP mission is to build capacity in those countries that seek to improve trade security, facilitation standards and controls at their borders. The main objectives of the Programme are:

- Assist Governments in participating countries to establish and maintain effective container controls that will serve not only to prevent drug trafficking and other illicit activities, but also to facilitate legitimate trade and protect border revenue;

- Establish and maintain Port Control Units (PCU) and equip and train customs and other law enforcement officers to better identify and inspect high-risk freight containers with minimum disruption to legitimate trade and business;

- Develops the capability to profile, target and examine containers being used for the transport of illicit goods. This includes narcotics; strategic and dual use goods; forest products and wildlife crime; and goods infringing intellectual property rights (IPR).

To date, the Programme has regional presence on the main ports of 12 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean: Argentina, Brazil, Cuba, Ecuador, El Salvador Guatemala, Guyana, Jamaica, Panama, Paraguay, Surinam and Dominican Republic.  Soon, the CCP will expand to develop PCU in Chile, Costa Rica and Honduras. At the global level, the CCP is operative in 42 countries whereas 16 more has been funded and ready to implement.

In 2015 the CCP launched its Women's Network at a global level to encourage equal participation of women in the Port Control Units and to raise awareness of gender issues. In Latin America up to 17% of PCU staff are female officers. In Cuba, it is expected that the future Unit reach 100% women staff.

Since its inception in 2009 the Programme has seized over 147,540 tons of cocaine, along with 451 cases of goods infringing to IPR violations, firearms and ammunition, cash smuggling, cigarettes and wildlife trafficking. In 2017 (January-April) CCP units have seized more than 14,772 kg of cocaine.