The Bureau of Customs (BoC) collected more duties last year, while enforcing stricter border control using X-rays, it said in a statement on Friday. 

The bureau collected P113.721 billion in duties and taxes using its X-ray machines, 13% higher than a year earlier. 

The agency said it bought four more machines last year, bringing the total to 124. Scanned containers rose by almost three-quarters last year to 847,950, it said. 

Customs seized illegal drugs and smuggled goods worth P363.1 million using the X-ray machines, it said. 

“The BoC stays committed in working effectively to minimize unnecessary delays in trade and to collect appropriate revenue for the government while securing the nation’s borders, especially during the ongoing pandemic,” it said. 

Last year, the agency collected P645.77 billion, which was 4.7% more than its target and 20% higher than in 2020. It expects to collect P671.7 billion this year. — Luz Wendy T. Noble