Working as an Anti-Smuggling Officer

Steve works as an anti-smuggling officer at Dover. At the age of 19 he joined the Dover Customs, clearing imported commercial goods. His team examines freight vehicles coming into the UK, looking for illegal drugs, counterfeiting, pirate goods, and other prohibited items such as firearms, and endangered species. He is also involved in the documenting and removal of suspect goods from vehicles.

He has a lot of contact with the public. He was attracted by the idea of working for a professional and well organized team, with the opportunity to work in a variety of disciplines.

The diversity of duties makes his work challenging and rewarding. He is lucky enough to be involved not only in anti-smuggling work but also in training. No other job could offer such personal satisfaction with the chance to protectsociety.

Exercise 12.Give the English equivalents for:

запрещенные товары, транспортное средство;получать удовлетворение; подозрительные товары; хорошо слаженная (организованная) команда; разнообразные обязанности; контрафакция; деятельность, связанная с борьбой против контрабанды наркотиков; пиратские товары; напряженная и стоящая работа.

Exercise 13.Rewrite the sentences below translating the Russian parts into English:

1. His отдел досматривает freight vehicles coming into the UK, looking for illegal наркотики.

2. He is also involved in the изъятие подозрительных товаров from транспортные средства.

3. No other job could offer such chance to защищать общество.

4. The diversity of his обязанности makes his work напряженный and стоящий.

5. Steve is also involved in the detecting контрафактные и пиратские товары, and other запрещенные предметы such as firearms, and животные и растения, находящиеся под угрозой уничтожения.

Exercise 14.Act out the dialogue asking ‘Steve’ the following questions:

-What does your work involve?

-When did you join the Department?

-What do you enjoy about your job?

-What’s been the high point of your career?

Exercise 15.Translate the Russian words in Text 3 into English.

Choose from: land tax; hazardous items; arrest warrants; parliamentary consent; legislation; authority; appropriate; Customs duty; goods; Customs area; collecting and safeguarding; bonded store; excise duty; entry; immigration authority; flow of goods; customary revenue; rules; personal effects.

Text 3

Customs is an орган (власти) or agency in a country responsible for сбор и сохранение Customs duties and for controlling the товаропоток including animals, личные вещи and опасные предметы in and out of a country. Depending on local законодательство and regulations, the import or export of some товары may be restricted or forbidden, and the Customs agency enforces these правила.

The Customs may be different from the иммиграционные власти, which monitors persons who leave or enter the country, checking for соответствующий documentation, apprehending people wanted by international ордера на арест, and impeding the въезд of others deemed dangerous to the country.

A таможенная пошлина is a tariff or tax on the export of goods. In the Kingdom of England, Customs duties were typically part of the обычный доход of the king, and therefore did not need парламентское согласие to be levied, unlike акцизный налог, налог на землю, or other forms of taxes.

Commercial goods not yet cleared through Customs are held in a таможенная зона, often called a склад временного хранения, until processed.

Exercise 16.Answer the following questions:

1. What is Customs responsible for?

2. What is immigration authority responsible for?

3. What is a Customs duty?

4. Where are commercial goods held uncleared?

Exercise 17.Translate into Russian.

Typical work at the Customs includes:

§ processing and risk-assessing passengers entering or leaving Russia (including baggage and personal search);

§ processing of cargo including documentary checks and physical examination (including at international mail centres and air and sea ports);

§ boarding ships and aircraft to check compliance with regulations;

§ searching ships for undocumented cargo, prohibited goods and stowaways;

§ collection of duty;

§ administrative work related to the above.

Exercise 18.Read Text 4 to answer the following questions:

1. In what country was the virtual Customs office established?

2. Why was this system introduced?

3. What does a virtual Customs office contain?

4. What does this project demonstrate?

5. What does it provide?

Text 4

The Virtual Customs Office

The Customs officer belongs to one of the longest established professions in the world, full of traditions and values. However, the world continuously moves on in order to keep up with demands of the 21st century (increased volume of trade abolition, new technologies, etc).

For example, the economy of Sweden is dependent on foreign trade and Customs is big business there. This resulted in the introduction of the virtual Customs offices and sophisticated automated risk-analysis operators.

The virtual Customs office contains a number of integrated, interdepartmental E-Services important for the Swedish business community.

The objective of this project was to provide a Virtual Customs Office, offering a high level of service, for example, service in a range of languages, currently numbering ten.

The Swedish Virtual Customs Office offers customers free web-services for Customs business in order to facilitate day-to-day work and also strengthen Swedish competitiveness.

Through automated clearance systems, 70% of the declarations are treated within three minutes. Currently the following client groups use the numerous services integrated into the Virtual Customs Office: Frequent Traders, Infrequent Traders, Citizens, Students, Press and Media.

Thus, the long term objective for The Virtual Customs Office is to give total mobility to Customs procedures. In order to achieve this, tailor-made electronic and web-services according to the needs of each of the customer segments are made available for free in the areas Information, Communication, Tools and Transactions.

Exercise 19.Read Text 4 again to find the English equivalents for:

давно существующая профессия; соответствовать требованиям; зависеть от внешней торговли; деловое сообщество; содействие торговле; высокий уровень услуг; автоматизированный анализ рисков; цель проекта; облегчать (упрощать) повседневную работу; укреплять конкурентоспособность;обрабатывать декларации.

Exercise 20.Choose the facts in the text to prove that:

1. The virtual computer is an old dream, a long story associated with the evolution of the computer.

2. Virtualization has always faced the need for better performance in terms of speed and development time.

3. Server virtualization reduces the costs and provides more flexibility for users.

4. The Virtual Customs Office in itself is a great innovation.

Exercise 21.Translate into Russian.

1) Swedish Customs initiated the construction of the Virtual Customs Office.

2) Swedish traders use electronic processes in their foreign trade procedures.

3) The Virtual Customs Office provides uniquely designed E-Services.

4) Web-technology helps put the focus on the client.

5) Virtual Customs opens new business opportunities for clients.

Exercise 22.Read Text 5 and speak on different Customs officer jobs.

Before reading study the following words and word-combinations:

to range – выстраивать(-ся) в определенном порядке; быть в пределах;

relatively – относительно;

border entries (=entryways) – (въездные) пункты пропуска на границе;

trucks – груженые фуры; грузовики;

to ensure – обеспечивать; гарантировать;

to investigate parcels – исследовать, проверять посылки;

thoroughly inspected – тщательно проверенный;

a shipper – грузоотправитель;

(the) appropriate documents – соответствующие документы;

safety – безопасность;

unique – уникальный;

suspicious – подозрительный;

to handle high-pressure situations – справляться с напряженными ситуациями;

prohibited items – запрещенные товары;

taxable – подлежащий обложению налогом;

to deal with a variety of personalities – контактировать, справляться с разными типами характера людей;

extensive cargo issues – выпуск (прохождение через таможню) растущего количества грузов.


Text 5*

Customs Officer Jobs

There are various Customs officer jobs available ranging from border control to commercial Customs inspectors. While each position requires Customs officers to perform specific tasks, all Customs officer jobs are relatively similar.

Customs officers can be situated at border entries, railway stations, airports, seaports, and many other entryways. Essentially, there are three main types of Customs officer jobs including commercial inspectors, traveller inspectors and postal inspectors.

Commercial inspectors are responsible for inspecting all cargo that enters or leaves the country. These Customs professionals must board boats, airplanes, and trucks in order to inspect cargo arriving from other countries.

In addition, a commercial inspector must also inspect any cargo that is leaving the country. These inspectors are also expected to inspect cargo documents in order to ensure that all laws have been met.

Postal inspectors are similar to commercial inspectors, only postal inspectors investigate parcels. All packages must be thoroughly inspected before leaving or arriving in the country. Postal inspectors must also make sure that any shipper or receiver has filled out the appropriate documents.

Traveller inspectors are different from postal and commercial inspectors. A traveller inspector’s duty is to speak with any traveller who attempts to enter or exit the country. These inspectors are often seen in airports, train stations, and seaports. Traveller inspectors are responsible for ensuring the safety of the country by refusing entry to anyone who seems suspicious.

Even though all Customs officer jobs are unique, many countries seek Customs officers who can speak a foreign language. Since Customs officers must communicate with people from all over the world, those officers who can speak a second or third language often secure top position. Additionally, any Сustoms officer should be able to handle high-pressure situations calmly and rationally.

Most of the Customs officer’s work involves processing various paperwork for immigration documents. They are also heavily involved in the inspection of cargo or baggage for prohibited items, as well as collecting funds for taxable imported goods. Most of the general public will see Customs officers when travelling between international destinations.

A Customs officer is a position that requires the ability to deal with many different types of people. Those who are at airports and borders will have to deal with a variety of personalities. Those who are at seaports will deal with fewer people, but will have more extensive cargo issues to pay attention to. This could include detailed examinations of large containers.

Exercise 23.Complete the sentences using the information from Text 5.


1. Commercial inspectors are ___________.

2. Postal inspectors are ________________.

3. Traveller inspectors are ______________.

4. All Customs officer jobs are ___________.

5. Customs officers must communicate__________.

6. Sometimes an officer has to be able to handle ___________.

7. They are also heavily involved in the ______________.

8. The position of a Customs officer requires _____________.

Text 6

Exercise 24.Fill in the gaps using the words from the box.


functions; Rescue System; aspects; centres; wine-making; brand; counterfeiting; strict; in accordance; bio-fuel; role; revenue

The importance of the role of the Customs Service has recently increased.

Customs administrations of different countries are responsible for extra (1) _________ that are not specific for the Customs Service.

In Czech Republic the Customs administration has been included in the Integrated (2)________ of the country as a unit cooperating with other security corps in emergencies and crises.

French General Secretariat of Customs duties and indirect taxes contributes to certain public-service missions at sea. This activity covers three (3) __________:

1) policing of navigation and fishing,

2) sea rescue,

3) pollution control.

The French Customs Service fulfils one more unusual function. Customs administration has set up 60 (4) ________ of wine growing control. There are several reasons for Customs to be responsible for this peculiar activity. The (5) __________ products are one of the main export items determining the position of France in international trade. French wine is a world-famous (6) ________ which needs to be protected from (7) __________.

The Saudi Arabian Department of Customs implements a (8) ________ import control of goods restricted and prohibited (9) _________ with the Islamic rules and moral issues.

For the Swedish Customs this has meant a cumbersome and expensive handling of the seized alcohol.

While Swedish Customs provides ecological well-being for their citizens participating in production of (10) __________.

HM Revenue & Customs plays a highly responsible (11) _______ in society by collecting majority of tax (12) ________ as well as paying tax credits and child benefit. English Customs administration established special programme “Child Benefit and Child Trust Fund”.

Customs Service is a unique authority because:

1. The structure and functions of Customs reflect specific character of the country: its economics and politics features, both administrative and territorial structure and geographic particulars;

2. Customs administration fulfils a wide range of different tasks;

3. Customs bodies can be involved in performing “extra functions” as they consist of well-trained and highly-qualified staff which have to face sophisticated objectives on the border-line of Law, Economics and Science.

Exercise 25.Translate into Russian.

“Customs Areas” means the areas where the Customs exercise their activities as well as areas where the Customs exercise direct and indirect control or supervision of the relevant affairs.


Talking Points

Exercise 26.State the arguments for these statements:

1. Customs cannot afford to ignore the changing world conditions which have a major impact on their work.

2. Customs officers face increased workload in their work.

3. Customs have to enforce special controls of passengers and their baggage.

Exercise 27.Make up a list of key problems which the Customs Service faces.

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