EPCSA and INCU to work together on research and education

01 June 2014
EPCSA and INCU to work together on research and education

The European Port Community Systems Association (EPCSA) and the International Network of Customs Universities (INCU) have signed a unique Memorandum of Understanding to work together on research and education.

The agreement is an important first step in building links that will help deliver trade facilitation on a global basis.

The MoU was signed in Baku, Azerbaijan, by EPCSA Chairman Alan Long, EPCSA Secretary General Richard Morton, INCU President Prof David Widdowson and INCU Head of Secretariat Mikhail Kashbubsky. The signing took place at the end of the inaugural INCU global conference, held in partnership with the State Customs Committee of the Republic of Azerbaijan.

“EPCSA is delighted to be working in partnership with INCU,” said Richard Morton. “Both organisations recognise the importance of linking business with Customs and of developing further cooperation between universities, researchers, business and Customs, in order to achieve trade facilitation.”

Prof David Widdowson said: “This is a really important step for building those links. We hope that our partnership will encourage future research that will serve to inform decision making on how to achieve trade facilitation.”

The first aim of the two organisations is to develop new curriculum modules based around Port Community Systems (PCSs) and the important role they play in the smooth flow of cargo around the world.

“For INCU, this is about helping Customs officers to understand how important PCSs are – they can’t be ignored and they play a vital role in world trade,” said Richard Morton. “For EPCSA, this partnership will provide a wider platform on which to explain to the broader industry what PCSs do in the real world.”

The European Port Community Systems Association (EPCSA) was formed in June 2011 by six of the leading European Port Community Systems Operators to represent the interests of the industry in Europe. Since then, the association has expanded to the point that its members operate in ports handling in excess of 80m teu and 2bn tonnes of cargo annually – more than 60% of all EU seaport throughput.

EPCSA’s influence has also spread geographically - it now has 21 members, including members in Ukraine, Israel and Australia, while its EU-based members are operating in many ports outside Europe.

The International Network of Customs Universities (INCU), whose secretariat is based in Canberra, Australia, is established to promote the academic standing of the Customs profession, promote academic excellence in Customs matters, generate research and greater public awareness of Customs matters, provide a single point of contact with universities and research institutes active in the field of Customs research, education and training, and provide a global and educational resource for governments, the private sector and students in the field of Customs, international trade and logistics.

For further information contact:

Richard Morton, EPCSA secretary general: richard.morton@epcsa.eu or +44 7796 334960.

David Widdowson, INCU president: dwiddowson@csu.edu.au or +61 418 868 409