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Career Development Programme marks its 10th year

25 February 2020

The Career Development Programme (CDP) celebrated its 10th anniversary in 2019. Funded by Japan Customs, it offers on-the-job training to mid-managerial level Customs officers during a 10 month stint at the WCO Secretariat under the supervision of experts in different areas.

So far, 95 officials from 61 Customs administrations have participated in the initiative driven by the opportunity to enhance their professional skills and knowledge, in order to better serve their respective administrations, enabling them to efficiently achieve national goals in the area of international trade.

The CDP stands out among WCO capacity building initiatives. Indeed, the type of support provided by the Secretariat can be divided into two, with some activities focusing on human resource and organizational development, and others focusing on the implementation of WCO instruments, tools and standards. The Programme is unique in the way it enables participants, known as Professional Associates (PAs), to address a multitude of areas related to human resource development at one time, while gaining a comprehensive insight into existing instruments, tools and standards, implementation of which would be useful for their administrations.

“I am very grateful to the CDP. It provided me with the knowledge and skills I needed to advance in my career and contribute to the modernization of my administration. It also broadened my understanding of world trade, and enabled me to obtain a global perspective. After completing the Programme as a member of the WCO Valuation team, I was promoted and am now the Head of the Tariff Regulation Unit.”

Mr Timur BEKTEMIROV, Kyrgyz Republic CDP 2014/15 (Tariff and Trade Affairs Directorate)

Over the years, through the CDP, a large network of alumni from all over the world has been built. For the great majority of them, the Programme represents a stepping stone for the development of their career. The skills they acquired, the experience they gained, and the international networks they joined in the course of their stay at the Secretariat has enabled them to stand out professionally and become a better resource for their administration.

“The knowledge and international experience that I acquired as a PA had a great impact on my performance at work and this did not go unnoticed as after my return, my administration entrusted me with a managerial position.”

Ms Balness MDEZO, Malawi, CDP 2013/14 (Compliance and Facilitation Directorate)

Administrations greatly benefit from the Programme. Having, as part of their staff, a specialist who obtained first-hand experience of working at the international level and who attended meetings and working groups where experts develop standards and discuss critical issues is instrumental in building a more effective partnership with the WCO Secretariat, as well as with other administrations.

“We are very grateful to the WCO and Japan Customs for designing such a useful Programme for developing countries and, in particular, for those that do not speak one of the WCO’s official languages. Argentina’s former PA Maria Fernanda Giordano now works on issues of international concern and follows all WCO related matters as a permanent liaison officer with the WCO Secretariat.”

The Federal Administration of Public Revenue of Argentina, Customs General Directorate

Today, with more than 10 years of insight, we can state with confidence that the success of the Programme is due to Japan Customs’ financial contribution, the trust demonstrated by the administrations when nominating participants, the firm commitment of each PA during and after their stay to serve their administration as best they can, as well as to the dedication of the CDP coordination team and WCO Secretariat experts who spare no effort in ensuring that PAs make the best use of their stay.

Candidacies for the 2020-2021 edition of the Programme can be submitted until Monday, 9 March 2020. Please refer to the WCO website for more information on the CDP selection process.

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