The World Customs Organization on Saturday elected senior customs officials from China and South Africa to director positions in the international organization.
The WCO Council chose Zhu Gaozhang to be the organization’s director of compliance and facilitation, and Erich Kieck to be head of capacity building. Both will join the WCO staff in January 2011.
Zhu is China Customs’ head director general for international cooperation. He joined the agency in 1982.
Kieck is group executive of strategy and policy for the South Africa Revenue Service. He joined SARS in 2001 after service in South Africa’s departments of finance and trade, and the private sector.
As head of compliance, Zhu will oversee the WCO SAFE framework for security and trade facilitation. He succeeds former U.S. Customs and Border Protection official Michael Schmitz, who will retire.
Also during the WCO Council meeting, the U.S. and South Korea signed an agreement for mutual recognition of supply chain security programs. It is the fifth such agreement the U.S. has signed with foreign customs administrations. It coincides with the Obama administration’s announcement that the U.S. will resume discussions of a free trade agreement with South Korea.
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