24.06.14 14th Senior Officials Meeting on Transnational Crime

Transnational crime has become increasingly pervasive, diversified and organized with globalization, technological advancement and greater mobility of people and resources across national borders. According to statistics provided by the United Nations Office of Drugs and Crime, UNODC, criminal networks netted some US$870 billion in turnover from their illicit activities, an immense amount that is comparable to one point fiver percent of the Global Gross Domestic Product or 7% of the world’s exports of merchandise.

The Profits to be gained from these illicit activities have shown that the criminals and other undesirable elements will stop at nothing, at the expense of not only peace and tranquillity, economic development but also the lives of ordinary innocent people and causing untold miseries to their families.

Raising the matter at the Opening Ceremony Of the 14th Senior Officials Meeting on Transnational Crime, SOMTC and its related Meetings in the morning, the Minister of Energy at the Prime Minister’s Office, said that the ASEAN Region has not escape unscathed from the global problem. Yang Berhormat Pehin Datu Singamenteri Retired Colonel Dato Seri Setia Doctor Mohammad Yasmin bin Haji Omar, in his speech strongly commended the SOMTC’s continuous efforts and cooperation in tackling the 8 specific areas of transnational crime, four of which have been identified as priority areas namely terrorism, trafficking in persons, Illicit Drug Trafficking and Cybercrime.

Earlier, the Permanent Secretary at Prime Minister’s Office, Dato Paduka Haji Hamdan bin Haji Abu Bakar, who is Chairman of the SOMTC Meeting, his welcoming remark among others touched about the 4th SOMTC meeting that Brunei Darussalam has hosted almost a decade ago in September 2004. Since then, SOMTC has been instrumental in a number of initiatives aimed at increasing ASEAN region’s capabilities in their continuous effort to stamp out transnational crime.

The 14th Senior Officials Meeting on Transnational Crime, SOMTC and its related Meetings commenced with the handing over of the chairmanship to Brunei Darussalam as the host country from Vietnam delegations as the previous 13th SOMTC Chairman. The meeting involves SOMTC Leaders and delegates from respective ASEAN Secretariat. This year’s SOMTC meeting focuses upon the implementation of the ASEAN Political security community, APSC Blueprint and ways to move forward in achieving the objectives laid out in the Blueprint by 2015 and beyond. The meeting involves SOMTC Leaders and delegates from respective ASEAN Secretariat. The function took place at the Indera Samudra hall, The Empire Hotel and Country Club, Jerudong.

News courtesy of Radio Television Brunei
Photo courtesy of InfoFoto

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