In June 2013, five customs officers from member states of the Oceania Customs Organisation (OCO), namely Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Samoa, Tonga and Vanuatu attended a four week internship under the OCO Twinning Program at the Royal Malaysian Customs Department (RMCD). The OCO Twinning Program is one of the key initiatives promoted under the Trade Facilitation in Customs Co-operation Project (TFCC) and funded by the European Union’s 10th European Development Fund (EDF) Program.
The overall objectives of this twinning program are to contribute to the strengthening and modernization of the Pacific African Caribbean Pacific (PACP) Customs administrations as well as to assist them in managing change innovation which covers areas such as strategic planning and reporting, communication and human resources management.
During the four weeks of internship, the interns were introduced to Malaysia’s Customs procedures and operational practices. A Twinning Officer was assigned with the task of preparing a schedule detailing the areas of attachments at operational sites, duration to be spent at each area of placement, and Supervisors assigned to oversee the “on the job training”.
Seven Supervisors from seven different divisions, namely the Enforcement Division, Technical Service Division, IT Section, Compliance Division, Integrity Section, International Affairs Section, and Royal Malaysian Customs Academy were appointed as mentors and given the task of designing programs specifically to cater the needs of the interns.
Beside classroom lectures, the interns also underwent practical training in the core areas of Customs operations such as Risk Management, Intelligence, WTO Valuation, Single Window, Automation, Post-Clearance Audit and Integrity. They were also briefed on Malaysia’s initiatives under the SAFE Framework of Standards and Revised Kyoto Convention. As the host for this program, it is RMCD’s hope that the interns will be able to translate the knowledge and experience that they have gained in the four week of internship to assist them in their endeavour for the development of their Customs administration.