WCO offers further support to Kenya within the Programme Global Shield


The Programme Global Shield (PGS) is a multilateral initiative developed by the World Customs Organisation (WCO) which aims at building the capacity of customs administrations to combat the illicit trafficking and diversion of chemicals and other components used by terrorists to manufacture improvised explosive devices (IEDs), the most prevalent form of explosives employed by terrorists around the world, due to the cheapness and wide availability of the materials needed to manufacture them. Started in November 2010 as a temporary (6 month) project, the PGS has been turned into a long-term program, which is now also recognised by the United Nations, that encourages all countries to participate and support it.

The overall objectives of the PGS are to:

  • Promote cooperation among Customs and Police Administrations in combating the illicit diversion of materials used to manufacture IEDs;
  • Raise global awareness of the increased threat posed by precursor chemicals and other dual use materials that can be used to manufacture IEDs;
  • Engage with private industry players to establish best practice programmes to avoid illicit diversion of precursor chemicals and other dual use materials that can be used to manufacture IEDs;
  • Train Customs officers in the detection/handling of IED materials;
  • Train trainers in all parts of the world in order for them to be able to deliver national or regional trainings.
  • Identify and seize illicit shipments of IED materials and communicate these seizures to other Programme participants and partner organizations through secure communication platform;
  • Initiate investigations and other enforcement activities regarding illicit shipments (backtracking investigations);
  • Identify and share best practices to combat the illicit diversion and trafficking of IED materials;
  • Monitor and track legitimate shipments of IED materials to identify the patterns, diversity, and extent of licit international trade; and,
  • Facilitate legitimate trade in precursor chemicals and other dual use materials that can be used to manufacture IEDs through risk-based targeting.

From 8 to 11 July 2019, experts from the WCO held a mission in Mombasa, Kenya, to offer support to the ongoing efforts of Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) to further enhance its border control capacity to improve safety and security of the people in Kenya.

In the beginning of 2019, KRA participated, together with the revenue authorities of Burundi, Rwanda, Tanzania and Uganda, to a Sub-regional Training-of-Trainer Workshop in East Africa on the PGS. The workshop was jointly organized by the WCO and the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA).

Subsequently, a pool of PGS trainers has been established within KRA for more sustainable PGS training delivery in Kenya.
As KRA has been actively delivering training and/or sensitization activities on PGS to secure its borders, the WCO, in cooperation with JICA decided to further support their efforts and to work with PGS trainers at Mombasa, one of the biggest entry points for East Africa where KRA organized a set of trainings/sensitization activities on PGS.

Together with the WCO experts, PGS trainers introduced the Programme Global Shield and trained/sensitized approximately 80 officials participated from the KRA on precursor chemicals, IEDs, detection methods as well as their handling, labelling and storage regulations.
Source: WCO