Over 8 bln liras worth of smuggled goods seized this year: Minister

Over 8 bln liras worth of smuggled goods seized this year: Minister

Over 8 bln liras worth of smuggled goods seized this year: Minister

In the first nine months of 2022, a total of 8.8 billion Turkish liras ($436 million) worth of smuggled goods, including cigarettes, macaroons and tobacco, have been seized, Trade Minister Mehmet Muş has announced.

The minister stated the teams established last year within the scope of the fight against smuggling so far seized 2.2 million packs of cigarettes and 42.7 tons of tobacco this year.

Speaking at the ceremony held to reward customs guards for catching considerable amounts of drugs, Muş said fuel oil and electronic devices are also among the most caught products being smuggled in the country.

The minister also pointed out that 39 billion liras ($2.1 billion) worth of fake invoices were detected in one year, while a public loss of 14 billion liras ($755 million) was uncovered, adding that they have prevented the public loss of 27 billion liras since April 2021.

He said the teams have seized 12.1 tons of drugs and 5.1 tons of precursors used in drug production since the beginning of the year.

A considerable amount of liquid methamphetamine, captagon and heroin were also caught at the customs in the southeastern province of Hakkari and the eastern province of Ağrı, he stated, thanking the staff at the customs for their outstanding service.

Underlining the measure taken amid the fight against smuggling, Muş said that with the implementation of the “Scanning Network Project,” customs officials will be able to examine the scanned images of vehicles at the customs simultaneously from the centers and detect smuggled goods with artificial intelligence.

The systems are used in different categories such as vehicle, container, train, fast scanning, backscatter and baggage scanning, he stated.

“To strengthen the place of our country in global trade, our ministry acts with the principle of integrating modern technology into our anti-smuggling activities and carrying out custom controls effectively and quickly,” he added.