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    RUSSIAN CUSTOMS, ASMAP TO TIGHTEN CONTROL OVER CARGO DELIVERIES

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    MOSCOW, March 18, 2004 (RIA Novosti) - Russia's customs service intends to tighten control over cargo deliveries to destination customs, together with the Association of Russian International Haulers (ASMAP).

    Deputy Chief of the Customs Service Leonid Lozbenko said this to reporters at a Moscow press conference, Russia's Customs Code: First Steps and Prospects, on Thursday.

    "We are signing an agreement to the effect, though not to a full extent yet - our law enforcers remain with us," said Mr. Lozbenko.

    ASMAP is a representation of the Transports Internationaux Routiers (TIR) on Russian territory. TIR members are the nations that have concluded a convention in particular envisaging a system of guarantee payments in case cargoes are not delivered from border posts to destination customs.

    In 2002, a conflict erupted between Russia and TIR when a large number of cargoes failed to be delivered to customs. During this period, Mr. Lozbenko said the Russian customs managed to cut the number of such cases from 0.6% to 0.023%.

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