The fight against fiscal crimes, including smuggling, is a top priority for President Nayib Bukele’s government in El Salvador. To strengthen their efforts, the Directorate General of Customs of El Salvador (DGA), a branch of the Ministry of Finance, has entered into a memorandum of understanding with the National Customs Authority of the Republic of Panama.
“The memorandum brings with it the best practices of both the customs authorities of El Salvador and Panama,” stated Benjamín Mayo, the head of DGA, who signed the memorandum alongside his Panamanian counterpart, Director Tayra Barsallo.
Both countries have been dealing with this issue differently, as unscrupulous individuals and criminal organizations attempt to evade law enforcement to smuggle goods and disrupt fair competition.
“This agreement enables the exchange of intelligence information to prevent crimes such as smuggling,” emphasized Director Mayorga. This collaboration will continue to shape instruments and strategies to enhance the fight against these crimes. “It will greatly benefit in strengthening the capabilities of personnel in both institutions based on successful experiences,” added the Customs Director.
President Bukele’s administration maintains daily surveillance activities and responds to the demands of the population to combat all types of illicit activities.
For instance, the Ministry of Finance, in conjunction with the General Directorate of Energy, Hydrocarbons, and Mines, as well as the Consumer Protection Agency, works together to identify practices that may affect the provision of subsidized services and the commercialization of goods under regulatory scrutiny. Daily inspections are carried out across the territory, including at gas stations and propane retail outlets.
The collaborative efforts between El Salvador and Panama serve as a testament to their commitment to eradicating tax evasion and smuggling, ensuring a fair and competitive market while safeguarding their respective fiscal interests.