Stock Saudi airport
Saudi passengers prepare to check-in for flights at the King Abdulaziz International Airport in Jeddah. Illustrative image. Image Credit: AP file

Cairo: Saudi Arabia’s customs authorities have urged passengers, arriving in or leaving the country, to declare their possession of cash or precious metals worth SR60,000 or more, warning defaulters could face a fine of up to 50 per cent of their value.

The kingdom’s Zakat, Tax and Customs Authority (ZTCA) has said that failure to declare the cash or jewellery of this value or an incorrect declaration makes the passenger liable to a fine of 25 per cent of the value of the seized items for the first time, increased to 50 per cent when repeated.

In case the seized items are suspected to be linked to a crime or money laundering, they will be fully impounded and the offender referred to public prosecution according to the kingdom’s anti-money laundering law.

ZTCA has stressed the necessity for international travellers to declare cash and precious metals of SR60,000 or more. The authority has explained that passengers arriving in or departing from the kingdom have to declare such cash or metal possessions electronically before reaching the entry or exit point via ZTCA app on smartphones or log onto its declaration page on the website, or head to the declaration offices at customs points on arrival or departure.

According to ZTCA, the declaration process is obligatory for each arriving or departing passenger carrying any currencies, gold bullions, precious metals or jewellery valued at SR60,000 or more, or their equivalents in foreign currencies.

The obligatory declaration also entails passengers who have any goods whether prohibited, restricted or subjected to taxes and fees, ZTCA said, adding that a proof of the legal source of the declared item must be submitted.