President Viktor Yushchenko held a meeting on counteraction to corruption in customs service at President’s Secretariat today. Participants of the meeting were Customs Service head Valeriy Khoroshkovsky, acting Security Service head Valentyn Nalyvaichenko, Prosecutor General Oleksandr Medvedko, first deputy President’s Secretariat Chief of Staff Oleksandr Shlapak and President’s Commissioner on Security Service supervision Ihor Pukshyn, president's press office reported.

During the meeting President Yushchenko put an assignment before those present and their respective departments to coordinate their actions more effectively in observation of Presidential Decree of March 4 “On smuggling and customs regulation violations counteraction Program for 2008-2009”.

In general President expressed positive opinion about Sate Customs Service’s work. According to his information customs duties during January – February has increased by 72% along with 29% increase in imports. He also expressed support of practices of firing those customs service officials, who were discrediting Customs Service. In this way 18 has been forced to resign since mid-February.

V. Yushchenko also described the problems that remain unsolved. He expressed concerns about the delay in investigation of 80 cases including 54 smuggling cases, which Security Service has institutedin last two months. In addition he requested that the Security Service and the Prosecutor’s Office examine in 30 days term the legality of 2005-2007 smuggling cases closing.

Separately President pointed to shortage in VAT rebates stressing that there are enough funds provided by the budget for that.


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