New Delhi: Customs administrations of 21 countries from South Asia, West Asia and Asia Pacific stressed on sharing data and intelligence in real-time to counter organised cross-border crime, the Finance Ministry said in a statement on Thursday.
"During the two day meeting, there was special emphasis on sharing of data and intelligence between different customs administrations... All the participating countries agreed to co-operate closely and counter the organised cross-border crime," it said.
The decision was an outcome of a two-day event organised on December 4-5 to conclude the Regional Customs Enforcement Meeting (RCEM) and to observe the 61st Foundation Day of the Directorate of Revenue Intelligence (DRI).
"Extensive discussions were held regarding mutual strategy to counter organised crime related to drugs, precious metals and stones, money laundering and black economy," it said.
Apart from the 21 countries, representatives from World Customs Organisation (WCO), Interpol, United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and Regional Intelligence Liaison Office for Asia and the Pacific (RILO AP) attended the meeting.
The DRI gave a presentation on "Data Exchange to Control Illicit Trade", highlighting the need, benefit and challenges for effective exchange of customs data and proposed a four-stage model. It also spoke on "Drug Trafficking, Smuggling and Organised Financial Crime".
While the Mauritius delegate laid great emphasis on sharing of information and intelligence on real-time basis, the Australian delegate elaborated on "Passenger Profiling and Targeting Capability" and explained their layered approach in profiling.
Interpol outlined major steps taken in recent times to promote police-customs co-operation and the WCO outlined the strategy and operations against drugs and NPS trafficking, the statement said.
Iran gave a presentation on various kinds of narcotics seizures made by them, while the UNODC (South Asia) gave a brief overview of the mandate of UNODC which includes combating, apart from drugs and organised crime, terrorism, smuggling and corruption.