Tuesday, 30 November 2021 08:14 GMT

Abu Samra border expansion to ease entry of fans for Qatar 2022: Official

(MENAFN- The Peninsula) Abu Samra border port expansion will facilitate commercial traffic to and from Qatar, Ahmed Al Sahel, Director of the Land Customs Department, has stated in the General Authority of Customs (GAC) monthly newsletter.

As Qatar counts down to the FIFA World Cup 2022, organisers hope to attract 1.2 million tourists to the country. Al Sahel noted that the expansion at Qatar's only land border would include a special area to receive fans for the World Cup.

“The Abu Samra border port expansion includes inspection plat-forms for tourists' vehicles, a special area to receive fans, sports teams, and delegations,” Al Sahel stated.

Qatar aims to streamline the tourism and hospitality sectors during and after the 2022 World Cup. Already, the hotel sector witnessed a 7% growth in occupancy rates during the first half of this year compared with the same period last year. With an expanded border port, facilitating entry on land would encourage visitors from neighboring GCC countries.

“This expansion is expected to facilitate the process of inspection of goods and tourists' vehicles to support the flow of commercial traffic in and out of the country and contributing to reviving Qatar's tourism.”

Al Sahel also disclosed that the land Customs Department updates its devices at the border crossing with a radiology team deployed to use X-ray devices at the port.“We have three devices for trucks and containers and five to examine parcels and personal luggage,” he added.

Meanwhile, the GAC has announced 315,463 declarations were released in October, a significant increase from August and September, which recorded 261,811 and 253,692, respectively. The Air Cargo Department completed 288,366 declarations in October, while the Maritime Department recorded 24,372 declarations.

Also, 97 percent of customs declarations were released in one hour of submission for processing. Also, the GAC transferred 26,343 customs declarations to other government agencies

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India and China remained the top exporting and importing countries. At the same time, the Ministry of Environment's Department of Fisheries knocks off the Natural Reserves and Wildlife Department as the Best Government Agency in time of release with an impressive release time of less than an hour.

The GAC inspectors continue their impressive record of thwarting efforts to smuggle drugs and illicit substances into the country. It recorded 443 seizure reports, with 33kg of hashish being the largest bust in October



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