A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between the Centre for Customs and Excise Studies and the General Zakat, Tax and Customs Authority of Saudi Arabia (ZATCA) strengthened ties between border security education and training institutes in the two nations.
The signing took place at the Zakat, Tax and Customs Conference 2023 at the Ritz Carlton Hotel, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia in February 2023.
The Centre for Customs and Excise Studies Regional Manager for the Middle East, Associate Professor Jamal Olaimat and the Governor of Zakat, Tax and Customs Authority, HE Eng Suhail bin Mohammed Abanmi officiated the signing.
The conference theme was ‘An integrated Digital Ecosystem to promote economic stability and safeguard security’.
Head of School at the Centre for Customs and Excise Studies, Charles Sturt University Professor David Widdowson, AM, said the MoU signing signified the start of a long-term relationship between Australia and Saudi Arabia on border control teaching practices.
“In a climate where global terrorism is almost constant and the threat to Australia’s national security is at an all-time high, there’s never been a more important time for the Centre for Customs and Excise Studies to forge new relationships with international partners,” Professor Widdowson said.
“The MoU expresses the intention to develop a long-term strategic alliance that seeks to promote cooperation in the development and provision of world-class customs training, education and research, including the development of a comprehensive, sustainable training framework for ZATCA.”
A spokesperson for ZATAC noted that the Centre for Customs and Excise Studies “… is the world-leading institution and we have no doubt that this collaboration will end up being a major success”.