The system allows customs officials to electronically scan and tag goods, thereby significantly cutting inspection times.

The kingdom began to install the system at the country’s ports in late 2005 and plans to conduct 90 per cent of all transactions electronically by the end of 2008.

Initially installed at the Islamic port and King Abdulaziz Airport in Jeddah, and King Abdulaziz Port in Dammam, the system is now installed at a total of eight seaports and four international airports, as well as other sites.

Faisal Al Moussa, director of the e-transactions project, says the system is now used by 43 cargo agents and over 320 customs clearers in Jeddah, as well as 30 cargo agents and some 180 customs clearers in Dammam.