Illustrative image (Photo: VNA)

Hanoi (VNA) – The Customs Department of southern Ba Ria – Vung Tau province launched a unit for container control on May 8 in an effort to counter trafficking of illicit goods across local ports.

The Container Control Programme is a joint initiative of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the World Customs Organisation (WCO) to support the participating governments to establish more effective container controls at ports across the globe and prevent trafficking of drugs, wildlife, weapons and other contraband in sea containers.

Vietnam joined the programme in July 2012 and it has been carried out in northern Hai Phong city since March 2015 and in Ba Ria – Vung Tau since November 2015.

The container control unit at the Ba Ria – Vung Tau port was established on October 19 last year. The 9-member group is headed by Nguyen Thanh Sang, deputy head of the provincial Customs Department.

The UNODC-WCO Container Control Programme has been operating in more than 50 countries all over the world. About 60 Joint Port Control Units were set up as part of the programme across Africa, America, the Middle East and Asia. The units are now present in Southeast Asian countries, including Cambodia, Indonesia, Malaysia, Laos, the Philippines, Thailand and Vietnam.-VNA