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Dubai Customs wins CIO 50 Award 2013 for Best IT Systems

Guiding Principle

The Customs Development Division at Dubai Customs has won the CIO 50 Award 2013 for the second time in a row and fourth time overall, in recognition of its efforts to integrate customs requirements with the latest IT solutions.

The award was handed to Mr. Younis Othman, CIO, Dubai Customs, during a ceremony held on January 30, 2013 by the Corporate Publishing International (CPI) and Forrester Middle East on the sidelines of the CIO 50 Awards and Forum. The event was attended by Middle East-based companies from both the public and private sectors to celebrate the top organizations that use information technology in innovative ways to deliver business value to customers.

Mr. Juma Al Ghaith, Executive Director of Customs Development Division, Dubai Customs, explained that Dubai Customs received the CIO 50 Award for its Risk Engine System that was developed by Dubai Customs as a smart electronic declaration system providing information from other internal and external authorities. Dubai Customs Intelligence Department gathers and analyses these information to determine any potential risks threatening the system which, in turn, detects all transactions related to these risks. The system is poised to protect the community from prohibited and counterfeit goods, reduce wastage of government resources and shall improve risk management while maintaining seamless workflow.

Reaffirming the regional and international position of Dubai Customs as a leading government department taking part in promoting legitimate trade, the Risk Engine System is aimed at accelerating business procedures and reducing the time needed to process transactions while taking into consideration public protection from smugglers.

The implementation and ongoing updates on the system have so far helped seize many locally and internationally restricted and prohibited goods, where the number of seizures increased by 355 % in the past three years (2010-2012). The Risk Profile Effectiveness further surged by 274 %, resulting in increase of positive hits probability.

As for its role in facilitating procedures and business transactions, the Dubai Customs Risk Engine has managed to reduce the time needed to process a transaction to less than two seconds, while 97 % of complaint (risk-free) transactions are risk assessed and cleared in less than one minute, from the time the client submits the data electronically to Mirsal 2 or B2G channel.

Nonetheless, the 13 % decrease in Intervention Rate has, in turn, contributed to the increase in number of auto-processed transactions, while the number of transactions processed within 10 minutes grew by 328 %, accounting for 82 % of total customs transactions.

Mr. Younis Othman further added, “The Risk Engine implementation has helped reduce maintenance and support costs of the IT system by 65%.”

The system has also helped foil three attempts to smuggle illegitimate goods worth a total of Dhs 140 m, including 500,000 Captagon tablets concealed in Fabric rolls; 8.6 million Taramadol pills; 215 African Ivory pieces and many more seizures.

Risk Engine has facilitated an increase in number of auto cleared transactions for legitimate traders in Dubai by 97 %, while the seizures of prohibited goods grew by 323 %; seizures of counterfeit goods by 335 % and seizures of the consignments related to country of origin by 283 % and therefore contributing to the greater protection of the economy and the community.
The World Customs Organization’s COLUMBUS Diagnostic Mission Report – a programme designed to develop customs work around the world – praised Dubai Customs’ efforts that aim to improve its procedures and customs systems, namely its Risk Engine System “which can be rightly regarded as ‘world class’ and which can be used as a model for other Customs Administrations around the world to learn from.”

Mr. Juma Al Ghaith mentioned that the technical achievements of Dubai Customs contributed in supporting the economy and facilitating trade movement while protecting local and international communities through development and implementation of its Customs Intelligence System under high technical standards. The system contains diverse yet integrated components aimed at handling targeted shipments through gathering, analysis and publishing of relevant information.

Mr. Younis Othman added, “We are proud to have won this prestigious award which underlines the efforts of Dubai Customs to improve and integrate IT innovations into customs operations; therefore offering more advanced services to customers. We have been working on facilitating the transfer of goods and passengers with strict supervision on cargo shipments to ensure protection of the local and international community and economies from attempts of smugglers and customs violators.”

Mr. Younis Othman concluded, “CIO 50 Awards recognizes the top 50 government and private organizations in the Middle East region, whose groundbreaking IT projects have had positive impact on their local business community.”

April, 2013 Tarek Jairwdeh
Meyer-Reumann & Partners, Dubai Office
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