Within 26th- 27th January 2022, representatives of Customs Administrations, the business community, agencies and institutions involved in customs procedures from the Western Balkan countries took part on an online Workshop on Single Window and Data Exchange, organized by the Customs Administration of the Republic of North Macedonia in cooperation with UNECE (United Nations Economic Commission for Europe). The workshop was also attended by senior officials from the European Commission, the World Bank, CEFTA and other partners.

Representatives of the Customs Administrations of Serbia, North Macedonia and Albania presented the concepts of development of the New Single Window System. The progress in the implementation of the Single Window System in the Western Balkans and the EU, with special emphasis on the development of the data model was presented by a representative of the European Commission. The participants of the workshop from the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe, the European Commission, the Transport Community, as well as representatives of the UN Center for Trade Facilitation and E-Business (UN / CEFACT) presented the standards for digitalization of multimodal transport data flows and international standards for document exchange.

In her welcoming address, the Director General of the Customs Administration, Slavica Kutirov MSc, noted that the Customs Administration of the Republic of North Macedonia is an active participant in the Western Balkans Trade Facilitation Project, financed by a World Bank loan, with full support of the International Finance Corporation (IFC). One of the components that are realized within this project is the implementation of the New Single Window System. It is expected that this system will meet the needs and requirements of Customs, agencies and inspection services participating in the customs procedure, as well as the business community in further facilitating and accelerating cross-border trade and compliance with regulations and standards in the EU Member States.

Ms. Elizabeth Tuerk, Director at UNECE, also had an address at the workshop, referring to the activities aimed at cross-border trade facilitation. Ms. Tuerk also pointed out that the Customs Administration of the Republic of North Macedonia is the first in the region and second of the institutions in European countries that have introduced a Single Window System in their operations, which is of great importance for facilitating trade.

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