Gambia states that Customs training helped the country
Victoria, Seychelles, 22 June 2011- The Chief of National Ozone Unit of Gambia, Mr. Sarr informed participants of the Regional Network meeting of National Ozone Units of the African countries organized by UNEP’s OzonAction programme in Seychelles that the Customs training and the chemical identifiers provided to his government are now coming handy to enable seizure of the illegal consignments coming in the countries in recent months.
Mr. Sarr described through his vivid presentation of photos, a story of the consignment arriving from Dubai labeled "HFC-134a”. Customs suspected it due to different color coding and sent the sample for analysis. It found that it only has a small percentage of HFC-134a which is an ozone-friendly alternative to CFC-12, which has been phased out under the Montreal Protocol. The remaining gases included CFC-12, HCFC-22 and air. He showed the photos of the cylinders. The meeting agreed that there is need to dialogue with Dubai transit authorities and UAE Government.
Similar stories were described by Sudan, Sierra Leone and Seychelles. While congratulating these countries for their work in preventing the illegal trade in ODS, Rajendra Shende, Head of UNEP's OzonAction programme stated that region-to-region cooperation is needed to intensify the combat against the illegal trade as the trade originated from outside the African region. He assured the African countries that OzonAction through its regional network in West Asia would initiate the dialogue with UAE and concerned authorities.
For furher information:
Jérémy Boubié Bazyé
Senior Regional Coordinator
UNEP Regional Office of Africa
PO Box 30552
Tel: +254 20 7624281
Fax: +254 20 7623165