BY Azlan Othman
The upgrading work at the Sungai Tujoh Immigration, Customs and Quarantine Complex (CIQ) is underway with 30 per cent of the work completed. It is expected to be fully completed by the end of this month.
The project to upgrade two new lanes for vehicles from Brunei Darussalam and one lane for vehicles from Miri is expected to streamline the traffic flow and accelerate the process at the customs and immigration sectors.
Sarawak Transport Minister Datuk Lee Kim Shin said this on Friday during a visit to the project site. He added that the three new lanes costing RM300,000 would help solve congestion at CIQ, Malaysian newspapers reported.
“This is due to the earlier design of the lane that caused congestion, especially during peak times for customs inspections. Both Malaysian and Brunei vehicles come out of the same lane although Malaysian vehicles do not have to go through customs checks. Following the completion of the new lanes, Malaysian registered vehicles will no longer have to line up with foreign vehicles upon arrival in Miri. There will be a special lane for Malaysian vehicles to exit the complex,” he told reporters.
The Sarawak Customs Department introduced the QR code for Vehicle Monitoring System (VMS) at CIQ last August. Although the system is fast, traffic congestion still occurs as a result of limited lanes for vehicles.
Lee, who is also a State Assemblyman for Senadin said he had received numerous complaints from the public about traffic congestion at CIQ.
Meanwhile in another development, the Royal Malaysian Customs Department (JKDM) is applying allocation for the implementation of Vehicle Monitoring System (VMS) with digital scans at all Immigration, Customs and Quarantine (ICQ) border posts in Sarawak.
Sarawak JKDM Director Datuk Sharifah Halimah Tuanku Taha said the VMS had only been implemented at the CIQ Sungai Tujoh Miri since September and had smoothened the movement of vehicles in and out of the border.
“We need to install VMS in every CIQ in Sarawak because currently only Miri has this system, we have requested allocation to ensure it is installed in other CIQs,” she told reporters.
Commenting on JKDM’s Miri performance, Sharifah said the branch had collected revenue and exceeded its target of 105 per cent by November.
“The Miri JKDM Enforcement Branch has collected RM8 million in revenue and the amount of tax collected has been RM21 million,” she said.
-- Courtesy of Borneo Bulletin