International Customs Day

What kind of holiday is this?

Every year on January 26, customs service employees around the world celebrate their professional holiday – International Customs Day. The holiday not only provides an opportunity to unite customs services in the world and show solidarity between them. On this day, the employees of the service make calculations, sum up the work for the past year, and make new plans for the next year. On the day of the customs officer, the society raises the question of the role of customs officers in the social and economic development of the planet.

How the idea to celebrate came about International Customs Day?

Like any other holiday, the International Customs Day has a very interesting long-term history associated with interesting events in this service sector.

January 26

The date is January 26 to celebrate International Customs Day was not chosen by chance. It was on this day, in 1953, that the first conference dedicated to the Council of Customs Cooperation was held in Brussels. The organization was created a year earlier according to a special convention. The first conference was attended by representatives from 17 European countries. On January 27, the Convention on cooperation of customs services was approved. Since 1983, the Day of the Customs Officer began to be celebrated regularly.

40 years later, namely in 1994, the Customs Cooperation Council received a new name – the World Customs Organization.

World Customs Organization

The organization is an international intergovernmental institution, which includes 183 countries. Ukraine joined this list in 1992. The purpose of the World Customs Organization is to create and disseminate guidelines and instructions in the field of customs affairs. This helps to accelerate the circulation of goods between different countries, to improve the process of movement of people and goods through border checkpoints, to regulate the diligent work of customs services in the confrontation with criminal organizations, illegal circulation of narcotic substances, jewelry and other goods.

Every year in June, the Council, the highest body of the customs service, meets. The Organization includes 6 regions of our planet. The largest regions include the European region, consisting of 51 states. In addition, the institution includes the following regions:

  • Countries of the Far East and South Asia.
  • Australia and Oceania.
  • North African countries.
  • North and Central America, the Caribbean.
  • Central and West Africa.

International Customs Day in Ukraine

Ukraine is a member of the World Customs Organization and joined the celebration of the holiday in 1992, taking into account the invaluable benefit of customs employees in ensuring the integrity of the country’s customs territory and establishing economic ties with other states.

International Customs Day in history

  • 1953
    January 26
    The first conference dedicated to the Customs Cooperation Council was held in Brussels.
  • 1992
    Ukraine joined the Customs Cooperation Council.
  • 1994
    The Customs Cooperation Council received a new name – the World Customs Organization.

Interesting Facts

  • In 1985, an extremely interesting event took place on the border between Peru and Ecuador. Peruvian customs banned the export of a large batch of Ecuadorian honey due to its cocaine content. However, no one mixed drugs with honey, the product was obtained by releasing bees to cocaine plantations.
  • The Cuban customs prohibit the importation of mobile phones, toasters, electric stoves and refrigerators.
  • Once a French Egyptologist brought home the mummy of an Egyptian pharaoh. Customs officers could not determine the amount of the duty for a long time, since such an item as “mummy” was not found in the customs list. As a result, the mummy was entered in the item as “dried fish” and the appropriate amount of duty was charged.
  • A funny event took place at the American customs when the famous Russian opera singer Fyodor Ivanovich Shalyapin was crossing it. While crossing the border, someone shouted “Look, this is Chaliapin – he has a golden throat!”. The American customs officer was not confused and sent Fedor Ivanovich for an X-ray.
  • After returning from the Moon to Earth, you also have to go through customs. This is what happened to the crew members of the Apollo 11 spaceship, among whom was the famous American astronaut Neil Armstrong. In the “departure” column, the astronauts wrote “Moon”, and in the “Arrival” column – Hawaii. I also had to make a declaration for the cargo, which included dust and stones from the Moon.

Frequent Questions and answers about International Customs Day

Who should be congratulated on International Customs Day?

This is a holiday for all employees of the State Customs Service of Ukraine, regional and specialized customs offices, and customs posts.

Greetings on the International Day of the Customs Officer

“Dear employees of the customs service! We sincerely congratulate you on your professional holiday! May calm peaceful work, happy life and growth in service accompany you. Always be determined, do your job responsibly and don’t forget to move up the career ladder. We love you and are proud of you!”

“Please accept sincere congratulations on the day of your professional holiday, as well as words of thanks and respect for the hard and persistent work and protection of the borders of our country. We wish you health, luck, success, joy in life and a peaceful sky over our Motherland. Happy International Customs Day”.

“The work of a customs officer is very serious and responsible. We feel its results every day. It is a peaceful sky above our heads, it is quality imported goods in our home, it is an opportunity to quickly and safely cross the border to travel to other countries, or an opportunity to invite foreign guests. We congratulate you, dear customs officers, we wish you even more effort, strength and health in your work and personal life.”

How to celebrate International Customs Day?

On this day, organizations hold speeches, seminars, appreciation events for customs officials, and educational seminars. Everyone can take part in the celebration of this holiday.

For this you need:

  • Think about how customs helps ensure the safety of our Motherland.
  • To notice what the world would be like if world trade were not governed by customs.
  • Think about the role that customs plays in ensuring security when traveling to other countries.
  • Learn more about the World Customs Organization and its 182 member countries.
  • Share this day on social networks.

When will we celebrate International Customs Day?

Year Date Weekday
2021 January 26 Tuesday
2022 January 26 Wednesday
2023 January 26 Thursday
2024 January 26 Friday
2025 January 26 Sunday

On a specific date

International Customs Day


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