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Tuesday, March 5, 2024

Ejercito: Automation will be needed to fight, end corruption at Customs

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Senator Joseph Victor “JV” Ejercito on Monday said modernizing and automating the Bureau of Customs (BOC) will address corruption in the agency.

He said this will also reduce “human discretion” in the BOC’s critical operations and assessments.

In a media interview, Ejercito, one of the principal authors of the Anti-Agricultural Smuggling Law, said automation will prevent assessment officers from manipulating the value of goods entering the country.

“They cannot automate and since their computerization was delayed, there will be human discretion,” he said. “If the BOC is not computerized, if there’s human discretion, if there were erasures, we know what happened,” he said.

The lawmaker from San Juan said he has received reports that the assessed value of a given product entering the country would sometimes differ across ports.

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Ejercito called on the national government to resume and expedite the BOC’s modernization program to address these discrepancies in the assessment of goods entering the country.

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