Better Customs Offices to Combat Smuggling

Central American industry is calling for strengthening of customs controls in the region, in order to contain the constant border crossings made with smuggled goods.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

According to Carlos Enrique Rivera, secretary general of the Federation of Chambers and Industrial Associations of Central America and the Dominican Republic (FECAICA), at the border located in Melchor de Mencos, Peten, which borders Belize, there is no control to prevent the entry of illegal goods, which apparently heads toward Mexico, but 15% remains in Guatemala, without having made tax declarations.

Meanwhile, Alfonso Cord, a businessman and FECAICA member, said that on customs forms these products are declared as being in transit in order to avoid paying taxes, but remain in Guatemala. Dog food, medicines, cigarettes, and flour, are some of the items that have been found entering from Belize.

Prensalibre.com reports that "the FECAICA is meeting next week with customs agents from the Isthmus, to present a project that seeks to improve border controls and communication between countries so as to reduce levels of smuggling. The forum aims to find funding to combat this scourge. "



More on this topic

Riots and the Fight Against Smuggling

November 2019

As a result of the operations carried out by the Superintendence of Tax Administration to stop smuggling, in recent days there have been two attacks on the customs area of Tecún Umán I, on the border between Guatemala and Mexico.

According to information provided by the Guatemalan authorities, on November 13 and 17, groups of alleged smugglers attacked the customs of Tecún Umán I in San Marcos, because in the operations deployed by the tax authority, merchandise was seized that was not declared upon entry into the country.

New Border Crossing Between Guatemala and Mexico

June 2017

The Morales administration has announced that they will be formalizing the crossing between Ingenieros, Quiché, and Nueva Orizaba, Chiapas, in order to facilitate cross-border trade in that area.

As part of this project, Foreign Minister Carlos Raúl Morales explained that a 19 kilometer road to Playa Grande is also planned.

Reduced Smuggling in Guatemala

November 2012

Anti smuggling operations are working, resulting in tax collections by Customs grow by 3%.

From a publication in Diario de Centro América:

Working together to reduce smuggling

The first quarterly report of the National Commission Against Contraband (CONACON) contains encouraging news: From June to September smuggling has been reduced and customs revenue increased 3%.

Customs Still a Problem

February 2012

Instead of being reduced, bureaucracy at the Central American borders is becoming increasingly burdensome, complicating and making intra regional trade more expensive.

Constant delays which increase transportation costs, lack of progress in the streamlining of customs procedures and a perceived stagnation of the customs and economic integration project are the most pressing problems observed by business associations in Central America.

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