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    MOSCOW, JANUARY 29, 2004. (RIA NOVOSTI). The international conference of heads of the customs services of the World Customs Organisation's European region will be held in Moscow on January 29-30.

    The press-release of the State Customs Committee (SCC), which RIA Novosti received, says the conference will be held in Moscow for the first time. Taking part in its opening ceremony will be SCC chairman Mikhail Vanin and the WCO secretary general Michel Danet.

    Representatives from 24 countries will participate in the work of the forum organised by the Russian State Customs Committee.

    They will discuss the three main topics - Modern Customs Services as Effective Element of Economic Development, Information Technologies and Means of Communication - the Catalyst of the Development of Customs Services, and Transit and Ensurance of the Transportation Route from Atlantic to Pacific.

    In June 2003, Russia was elected vice-president of the World Customs Organisation - Coordinator of the European region.

    The World Customs Organisation was founded by the convention on the creation of the Council of Customs Cooperation, which came into force on November 4, 1952. At the present time, the organisation unites 162 countries.

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