Australia and Fiji Working Together to Target Illicit Trade
Australia has contributed over $100,000 worth of IT equipment to support Fiji Revenue and Customs Service (FRCS) with their sea and air cargo targeting capabilities. The IT equipment delivered this week will significantly enhance the connectivity between risks systems as well as support Fiji’s ability to analyze large trade data sets to identify high-risk consignments.
Through the delivery of this equipment, Fiji plans to establish modern targeting and profiling capabilities to minimise the use of cargo and other means of transportation for drug trafficking, transnational organized criminal activities and other forms of illegal trade to ensure facilitation of legitimate trade and promote secured global trade supply chain.
This funding has been made available through the Border Security Assistance Package as part of the Fiji-Australia Vuvale partnership.
Since the launch of the United Nations Office on Drug and Crime (UNODC) and World Customs Organization (WCO) Container Control Program (CCP) in August 2020, Australian representatives in Fiji have worked with FRCS to build an IT infrastructure that supports the targeting and profiling efforts of the FRCS National Border Cargo Targeting Centre (NBCTC).
FRCS acknowledges the valuable support from the Australian Government through the Australian Border Force (ABF).
The modern technology and equipment will provide FRCS the ability to profile and target sea and air cargo shipments for the risk of illicit trade and revenue frauds. The officers seconded to these units are supported with mentoring sessions and training conducted through the WCO-UNODC Container Control Program which is sponsored by the Australia Border Force.
Australia recognizes that as a central hub for the movement of people and cargo through the Pacific, Fiji plays a fundamental role in the movement of sea and air cargo across the Pacific region.
The operations of these units are centered around the virtual border and the IT equipment donated by the Australian government will greatly enhance the capability of these units in having real-time access to advance critical cargo information and systems. Since the establishment of these units, there have been over 50 successful interceptions, including methamphetamine, weapons, cargo of environmental risk, illicit medicines and other border security related elements. Furthermore, there has been an increase in the number of detections related to revenue evasion, leading to financial penalties that support Fiji’s economy.
With our pre-screening capabilities, and this donation, our capability to detect, dismantle and disrupt illicit importation and organized crime syndicates is enhanced and we can support legitimate trade to help Fiji grow. Our Customs to Customs partnership today has been strengthened with this collaboration and serves to promote Coordinated Border Management.
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