CUSTOMS Commissioner Alberto Lina on Wednesday ordered a strict monitoring of incoming shipments in all ports, particularly in the Mindanao area, following reports of the entry of “fake” rice from China.
“We are strictly monitoring the area and we would like to assure the public that the BOC (Bureau of Customs) is committed to curb the smuggling of items especially illegal importation of basic commodities like rice that disadvantageously affects our country,” Lina said.
The bureau, he added, is coordinating with the National Food Authority, local government units, and other concerned agencies, including the Philippine National Police, Philippine Coast Guard and the Armed Forces of the Philippines.
Lina and Enforcement Group Deputy Commissioner Ariel Nepomuceo earlier inspected several Davao ports, including the Davao International Container Terminal and Sasa Wharf.
He reported that they did not find plastic or synthetic rice during their inspection.
Last July 7, combined elements of the NFA and BOC conducted a surprise raid on several establishments in Binondo, Manila where they confiscated more than 1,500 sacks of smuggled rice from China.