Until now, Turkic Council convened seven meetings of the Heads of Customs Administrations and ten meetings of the Working Group with the participation of the experts of the relevant institutions of the Member States.
The last Seventh Meeting of the Heads of Customs Administrations was held on 11 March 2019 in Astana.
Secretary General Baghdad Amreyev chaired the Seventh Meeting of the Heads of Customs Administrations, which was hosted by the Chairman of State Revenue Committee under the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Kazakhstan Marat Sultangaziyev on 11 March 2019 in Astana and attended by the First Deputy Chairman of State Customs Committee of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ismail Huseynov, First Deputy Chairman of the State Customs Committee of the Kyrgyz Republic Sultan Mamasadykov and Deputy Minister of Trade of the Republic of Turkey Gonca Isik Yilmaz Batur, as well as senior officials of the Member States.
As the host of the meeting, Chairman of State Revenue Committee under the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Kazakhstan Marat Sultangaziyev welcomed the participants and put a special emphasis on the importance of cooperation especially in establishing Authorized Economic Operator system and e-commerce among the Member States.
Secretary General informed the Parties on the activities of the Turkic Council undertaken in the field of customs cooperation, focusing on the latest achievements such as fields visits to Border Crossing Points (BCPs) of the Member States, involvement of the Member States to Silk Road and Caravanserai initiatives, training programs in the field of Authorized Economic Operator and transit customs facilitation. He also emphasized recent initiatives undertaken by the Member States to reinforce transit linkages and connectivity in the region such as Trans-Caspian International Transport Route (Middle Corridor), construction of Baku-Tbilisi-Kars railway and underlined the central role of the Customs Administrations in facilitating trade and ensuring smooth movement of transit goods.
First Deputy Chairman of State Customs Committee of the Republic of Azerbaijan Ismail Huseynov informed the Parties on the latest reforms realized in the field of customs, particularly aimed for the development of the public-private partnership, simplification of export-import processes and ensuring transparency in customs procedures. Stressing that Azerbaijan attaches great importance to the multilateral cooperation among the Customs Administrations of the Member States within the Turkic Council, he stressed that the present MoU signed on the cooperation in the field of customs enforcement will yield good results and generate new directions to the existing cooperation mechanisms.
First Deputy Chairman of the State Customs Committee of the Kyrgyz Republic Sultan Mamasadykov underscored the necessity of implementing joint actions by Customs Administrations of member states within the framework of Turkic Council on modernization and facilitation of customs procedures, development of a public-private partnership for increasing the trade flows.
Deputy Minister of Trade of the Republic of Turkey Gonca Isik Yilmaz Batur stated that the cooperation in the field of customs has a signicant importance in the framework of the activities aimed at increasing the trade volume among the Turkic Speaking States. Deputy Minister gave detailed information on the achievements of the Silk Road Initiative and Caravanserai Project. Touching upon the decision taken at the 10th Meeting of the Turkic Council Working Group on Customs Cooperation held on 12 December 2018 in Astana, she stated that the modernization of the Sarp Border Crossing Point between Turkey and Georgia was recently completed and officially opened on 1 March 2019, therefore she expressed the readiness of Turkey to materialize the Trade Caravan Demonstration Tour in the course of the first half of this year.
At the meeting, the Parties exchanged their views on the agenda items including the Silk Road Initiative and Caravanserai Project, Public-Private Partnership, the schedule of training programs to be held in the course of 2019, as well as Turkic Council Trade Caravan Demonstration Tour.
Moreover, as encouraged by the Presidents of the Turkic Council Member States at the Sixth Summit of the Turkic Council that was held on 3 September 2018 in Kyrgyzstan, the Parties expressed their readiness to increase efforts in regional integration through simplification, automation, modernization, standardization and harmonization of Customs procedures by the use of its instruments, best practices and capacity building programs.
One of the important outcomes of the meeting was the signing of the Memorandum of Understanding among the Customs Administrations of the Member States of the Turkic Council on Cooperation in the field of Customs Enforcement, through which the Member States will cooperate and assist each other in the prevention, investigation and combating of customs offences.