Dubai: The challenges posed by the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic have shown the incessant need to digital shifts in customs services and procedures to better serve global travel, trade and supply chains, according to Ahmed Mahboob Musabih, Director General of Dubai Customs.
He made the remarks at a virtual ceremony on the launch of Dubai Customs’ ‘iDeclare’ smart application.
The application simplifies the Customs clearance process for passengers by enabling self-declaration of their must-declare commercial goods, personal effects, or cash either pre, or post-arrival at the airport, reducing the time needed for that to less than four minutes.
“Digital transformation is at the core of Dubai Customs’ strategies and plans to ensure streamlined passenger traffic and trade. For this, the smart iDeclare Application is gaining more importance these days supporting Dubai International Airport in its mission as one of the best airports in the world dealing with the pandemic. For the seventh consecutive year, Dubai International Airport topped global airports in 2020 as the world’s busiest airport despite lockdowns and restrictions posed by the pandemic,” he said.
He added that the application will be a turning point in the passengers’ experience, especially with the approach of Expo 2020 Dubai, as passengers will be easily able to declare their personal goods while travelling through Dubai Airports. Musabih was speaking at a virtual ceremony of Dubai Customs, organised to highlight the new app’s features and advantages.
The second release of the smart iDeclare App operates with artificial intelligence (AI) features that enable the app to recognise goods to be declared through just photographing them and will provide the HS Code and duties specified for them instantly.
The app also features a scanner that can read and store travel data without a need to fill them out, and all services of Dubai International Airport will be available on the app. The app will enhance inspection efforts at the airport and raise more awareness on prohibited and restricted goods. The app can be downloaded on Google Play and Apple Store.
Khalid Ahmed, Acting Director of Passenger Operations Department at Dubai Customs, said the new application aims to help the passengers have a pleasant travel experience by reducing the time needed at the counters.