Sniffing out smugglers and to also combat terrorism

Customs officers nabbing a suspect after finding ‘drugs’ during a demonstration at the closing of Operasi Patkor Kastima Siri 21B, a joint operation exercise with their Indonesian counterpart, at the Customs Complex in Seberang Jaya, Penang. — Photo: ASRI ABDUL GHANI/The Star

THE ROYAL Malaysian Customs Department and its Indonesian counterpart held a joint training exercise called ‘Operasi Patkor Kastima Siri 21B’ to raise the level of professionalism, skills and sharing of knowledge.

Customs director-general Datuk Seri Khazali Ahmad said both the countries would work hand in hand to monitor the smuggling activities along the Straits of Malacca, including the northern states of Penang, Kedah and Perlis.

“We are worried that the proceeds from the smuggling of drugs would be used to finance terrorism activities in the country.

“We will also work closely with the other enforcement agencies, especially the police to combat terrorism,” he said at the Customs Complex in Seberang Jaya yes-terday.

Khazali said they would also monitor importers and the things they bring into the country.

Also present was Indonesian Customs and Excise Department director-general Heru Pambudi.

Khazali said the two countries would create a database application to share information between them.

“The sharing of information actually started 21 years ago and the system is going to be easy for the exchange of data.

“We are confident that this approach can help combat smuggling activities more effectively,” he said.

On another matter, Khazali said more than RM5bil had been returned to businesses within 14 days since the implementation of Goods and Services Tax (GST) on April 1.

“More than 70% of the claims were paid based on the claims submitted to date.”

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