Let’s work together against illegal trade
UK High Commissioner Harriet Cross urged everyone to work together against the scourge of illegal trade, in her opening remarks during a webinar on the topic on Wednesday.
She said the illegal trade affects Trinidad and Tobago and many other countries around the world.
“At the British High Commission, one of our main areas of work is the development of trade and investment relations between our two countries.
“And more broadly, we are directing our energies towards specific thematic areas, including illicit financing, serious organized crime, obstacles to market access and the fight against corruption.
“In doing so, we engage a complex network of stakeholders, both national and UK, to provide support and expertise, building capacity where we can among key agencies.”
Cross said the day’s presenters were “some of the best minds from both countries,” who would share their views, looking at all angles objectively and analytically.
“It is not our intention today to impose a single policy on anyone, but to share our experiences, as well as those of other countries, in the fight against illicit trade.
“One thing is essential, however: the illicit trade cannot be stopped without collaboration.”
Collaboration between ministries, the private sector and law enforcement must involve a steady flow of information to prevent the entry of illegal goods, as well as law enforcement, to ensure very real consequences for such cases. actions.
“A key aspect of this is to educate customers about the dangers of illicit trade, which can have an adverse effect on public health.”
Cross said the covid19 pandemic has led to an increase in illicit trade around the world.
“There has been an increase in demand for pharmaceuticals, compounded by disruptions to the global supply chain due to the pandemic. “
She cited a recent report from the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development as saying, “Electronic commerce is emerging as the main platform for illicit products, including counterfeit and substandard drugs, drug kits. test and other products related to covid19. “
Cross was pleased to see that the government had appointed an anti-illicit trade task force to examine the problem and develop a coordinated approach to address it.
“We hope that today’s session will support this ongoing work and strengthen the resolve of all those involved in shaping a strategic approach and eventual solution that is suitable for Trinidad and Tobago. “