Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Government move to increase Customs resourcing

Record precursor seizures reinforces government move to increase Customs resourcing

The New Zealand Customs Service has seized a record amount of unlicensed precursor substances this year and increased resourcing of the service is also expected to yield further interceptions, Customs Minister Rick Barker said today.

“As at 23 September this year, Customs had seized 623,000 ephedrine and pseudoephedrine tablets or powered equivalent believed destined for methamphetamine production in New Zealand.

“This figure already represents a 300 percent increase in seizures from last year. In 2001, 32,653 tablets were intercepted, compared with 254,987 tablets last year.”

Customs believes seizures of these precursors, key ingredients in the production of methamphetamine, will top one million tablets by the end of this calendar year.

Although Customs can only estimate how much of these substances are not intercepted, Mr Barker said the steady rise in seizures demonstrated how important it was for the government to increase border drug controls.

“Figures in the media recently of four million precursor tablets slipping past the border were based on historic estimates which suggested that Customs may be seizing about 20 percent of unlicensed shipments.

“If we say we’re on track to seize 1 million tablets by the end of the year, the media have expanded that to suggest four million tablets are making it through. The reality is that no one really knows how many precursors are getting through.

“However, what we do know is that Customs is intercepting more precursors than ever before and this government is committing more resources than ever before to ensure that the scourge of methamphetamine is answered.

The government’s Ministerial Committee on Drug Policy has also taken other significant steps to meet the methamphetamine problem head on.

“Methamphetamine is now a Class A drug, pseudoephedrine and ephedrine will soon be classified as Class C drugs and Cabinet has just approved lowering the presumption of supply for methamphetamine from 56 grams to 5 grams. This government is not soft on drugs,” Mr Barker said.

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Veronika Meduna: The Kaikoura Rebuild

A Scoop Foundation Investigation

Friday will be a big day for people north of Kaikōura – and for hundreds of construction workers who are racing to reopen State Highway 1 in time for the holiday season.

By the afternoon, the South Island’s main transport corridor will be open to traffic again, more than a year after a magnitude 7.8 earthquake mangled bridges and tunnels, twisted rail tracks and buried sections of the road under massive landslides. More>>

 

BPS HYEFU WYSIWYG: Labour's Budget Plans, Families Package

“Today we are announcing the full details of the Government’s Families Package. This is paid for by rejecting National’s tax cuts and instead targeting spending at those who need it most. It will lift 88,000 children out of poverty by 2021." More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Defence Spending, Alabama, And Dolly Parton

The spending lavished on Defence projects to meet the risks that could maybe, possibly, theoretically face New Zealand in future is breath-taking, given how successive governments have been reluctant to spend even a fraction of those amounts on the nation’s actual social needs. More>>

ALSO:

Members' Bills: End Of Life Choice Bill Passes First Reading

The End of Life Choice Bill in the name of David Seymour has been sent to a select committee for consideration by 76 votes to 44. It is the third time Parliament has voted on the issue in recent decades and the first time such a Bill has made it over the first hurdle. More>>

ALSO:

State Sector: MPI Survives Defrag Of Portfolios

The Ministry for Primary Industries will not be split under the new government, but will instead serve as an overarching body for four portfolio-based entities focused on fisheries, forestry, biosecurity and food safety. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Vulnerable Kids, RNZ Funding, And Poppy

The decision to remove the word ‘vulnerable’ from the Ministry for Vulnerable Children could well mark a whole shift in approach to the care of children in need... More>>

ALSO:

 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

Featured InfoPages