International Customs Day (ICD) is celebrated on January 26 every year, to recognize the role of customs officers and authorities and to focus on the working conditions and challenges faced by customs officers at work. International Customs Day theme in 2021 is “Customs bolstering Recovery, Renewal and Resilience".
History of International Customs Day
Every year, on January 26, International Customs Day recognizes the role customs officials and agencies play in maintaining the flow of goods across world borders. On this day, members of the World Customs Organization (WCO) also demonstrate their efforts and activities.
Customs is the agency in a country that is responsible for collecting taxes. Customs also controls the flow of goods in and out of the country. These goods can range from animals or dangerous materials to personal items. WCO helps customs authorities around the world operate more efficiently. Headquartered in Brussels, Belgium, the organization includes 182 members from around the world. Three-quarters of its members come from developing countries. Their responsibility is to manage more than 98% of world trade.
The WCO believes that while borders are divided, customs will connect. Their duties are to lead, guide and assist the customs authorities. They also believe that customs help meet the economic, social and environmental needs of our planet. In turn, customs contribute to building a sustainable society.
The Customs Cooperation Council (CCC) held its inaugural session on January 26, 1953. Members from seventeen European countries attended the event in Brussels. In 1983, CCC created International Customs Day. The 30th anniversary of the founding of the first CCC session. In 1994, CCC was renamed to WCO. Today, the WCO is the only international body dedicated to international border control and customs matters.
How to celebrate International Customs Day
Customs authorities hold employee appreciation events where customs officers are recognized for their exemplary service. Workshops, conferences and seminars focusing on the year's theme and challenges faced by agencies and staff are also held.
Some agencies also hold outreach events where they educate the public about their work and responsibilities.
ObservedInternational Customs Day has been observed annually on January 26th.
Sunday, January 26th, 2020
Tuesday, January 26th, 2021
Wednesday, January 26th, 2022
Thursday, January 26th, 2023
Friday, January 26th, 2024