About the IFCBA

The IFCBA has been representing the interests of the worlds' customs brokers and their clients since 1990. Many of our member associations have been involved in similar activities within their own countries for nearly a century. » more

Recent News

Data is generated by every economic activity, including the movement of goods and people and circulates extensively along the global value chain. Collecting and analyzing data to enhance the effectiveness of border management is of paramount importance to Customs administrations. This year, in the context of the International Customs Day, the WCO is introducing the theme “Data Analysis for Effective Border Management” to encourage the global Customs community to pursue their efforts and activities in this area.

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Message from the WCO Secretary General - Arabic

Message from the WCO Secretary General - Portugese

Message from the WCO Secretary General - Spanish

Message from the WCO Secretary General - Chinese

Message from the WCO Secretary General - Russian

Mr. Hiroshi Suzuki, President of JCBA was awarded “the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon” by His Majesty the Emperor at the Imperial Palace on 15th of November this year for having greatly contributed toward the advancement of customs brokerage in Japan.

Mr. Hiroshi Suzuki has held important positions with JCBA and TCBA (Tokyo Customs Brokers Association). During his term, he made significant contributions to further facilitating trade in collaboration with Japan Customs authorities and to revising the customs brokerage system, specifically with an amendment to Japanese customs brokerage law which will come into effect in October 2017 based on a constructive proposal to the government.

The Order of the Rising Sun, Gold Rays with Neck Ribbon awarded to Mr. Hiroshi Suzuki is the highest among the Orders which were awarded to the former presidents of JCBA and the regional customs brokers associations. And this recognition to the president of JCBA took place for the first time in twenty years. Mr. Hideo Hirose, ex-president of JCBA was awarded this decoration in 1996.

The IFCBA is greatful for the support of JCBA over more than 25 years, and recognizes the outstanding quality of its representatives to IFCBA.

Congratulations, Mr. Suzuki, from your many customs broker friends and colleagues around the world!

Today, the WCO released Guidelines for strengthening cooperation and exchange of information between Customs and Tax authorities at the national level. These Guidelines have been formulated with the support of WCO Members and development partners, especially the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) and the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC). The Guidelines aim to provide reference guidance to Customs and Tax authorities who wish to go further in their cooperation and develop operational models which enable agencies to work together to their mutual benefit.

Although there is no limit to the ways in which these two agencies can work together, and countries should consider new and innovative methods based on their organizational structure, needs and operational requirements, the Guidelines highlight some overarching principles and associated benefits concerning enhancement of Customs-Tax cooperation.

In particular, the Guidelines provide a comprehensive overview of the enablers for mutual cooperation and exchange of information, address the scope and remit of information exchange, cover different information exchange mechanisms, list the type of activities that Customs and Tax authorities may undertake together, and provide key principles and points to consider when developing a Memorandum of Understanding/Agreement (MOU/MOA).

Today, the World Customs Organization (WCO) released the 2017 edition of the Harmonized System Nomenclature, the world’s global standard for classifying goods in international trade, which will enter into force on 1 January 2017.

Used by over 200 countries and economic or Customs unions as well as by international organizations such as the United Nations Statistical Division (UNSD) and the World Trade Organization (WTO), the Harmonized System (HS) Convention currently has 154 Contracting Parties, making it the WCO’s most successful instrument to date.

The 2017 Edition of the HS Nomenclature includes 242 sets of amendments (including some complementary amendments): 85 relating to the agricultural sector; 45 to the chemical sector; 22 to the wood sector; 15 to the textile sector; 6 to the base metal sector; 25 to the machinery sector; 18 to the transport sector and an additional 26 that apply to a variety of other sectors.

The 2017 edition of the Harmonized System comprises a total of 5,387 separate groups of goods identified by a 6-digit code (compared to 5,205 in the 2012 edition).

Click here for the HS Nomenclature 2017 Edition.

HS-related Council Recommendations

The Council, at its 127/128 Sessions in July 2016, adopted two HS-related Recommendations amended consequential to the Council Recommendation of 27 June 2014 concerning the amendment of the HS Nomenclature. First is the revised Recommendation of 18 June 1996 on the insertion in national statistical nomenclatures of subheadings for substances controlled under the Chemical Weapons Convention. Second is the Recommendation on the use of standard units of quantity to facilitate the collection, comparison and analysis of international statistics based on the HS Nomenclature 2017 Edition. With the acceptance of the revised Recommendation, the version of 24 June 2011 has been revoked with effect from 1 January 2017.

Click here for the HS-related Council Recommendations.

Correlation Tables HS 2012 – 2017

Some corrections have been made in the tables correlating the 2012 and 2017 versions of the Harmonized System.

Click here for the Correlation Tables HS 2012 – 2017.

The IFCBA was privileged to present commentary about the impact of HS changes on the business community to the special session of the WCO's HS Review Sub-Committee, entitled "HS2022 - Dialogue with Stakeholders". Watch for further information about this. 

Members interested in following developments with the WTO Trade Facilitation Agreement as it approaches the magic number of 2/3 of its 164 members required for the TFA to come into force are encouraged to visit  www.TFAFacility.org.  Not only can you get the latest news and monitor the status of TFA ratifications and notifications, you also can sign up for NewsBytes from the WTO.