Customs can reveal confidential information

Singapore Customs will now be able to disclose previously confidential information declared by traders to the agency, to other public agencies.

Minister for Trade and Industry Lim Hng Kiang said in Parliament yesterday that such disclosure is now possible due to amendments to the Regulation of Imports and Exports Act.

This means Singapore Customs can disclose such information to safeguard public interest, for the investigation of offences, and for the analysis of trade trends and formulation of trade policies, reported The Straits Times Online.

There will be safeguards to protect commercially sensitive data, said Mr Lim. Each information request will require the minister's approval, and will be granted "only when there is strong justification to do so". Previously, information declared by traders could only be disclosed with their consent, or when it was needed for investigation and prosecution purposes, or for trade agreements.