Hong Kong and Australian Customs sign communiqué for closer cooperation

27 Mar 2007

The Commissioner of Customs and Excise, Mr Timothy Tong, signed a joint communique for closer cooperation with the Chief Executive Officer of Australian Customs Service (ACS), Mr Michael Carmody, today (March 27) in a biennial meeting between the two administrations.

Under the communiqué both sides have agreed to continue with the "immediate Notification Mechanism" for prompt exchange of intelligence to combat transnational customs offences including drug trafficking, intellectual property rights infringements and revenue fraud; to enhance cooperation in risk analysis and sharing of expertise; and to organise training and reciprocal visits.

Mr Tong and Mr Carmody reaffirmed that the cooperation of both administrations has been working satisfactorily.

"The Immediate Notification Mechanism proposed in the last meeting between the two administrations has proved effective and efficient in responding immediately to Customs offences. We have successfully smashed a heroin smuggling syndicate through this mechanism," Mr Tong said.

Mr Carmody led a 5-member delegation to attend the 7th Customs-to-Customs talks in Hong Kong. After the meeting, the delegation visited the Kwai Chung Customhouse and the Customs Marine Base at Stonecutters Island.

The delegates will leave Hong Kong tomorrow.

Ends/Tuesday, March 27, 2007

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