Malaysia Customs : should I declare my IT equipments?

Posted On 23/12/2005

Filed under Food for thoughts

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When coming back from Thailand business trips to Malaysia, checkin at KLIA customs, I am stopped for bringing a big luggage of a piece of desktop PC. Yes, it is not a notebook computer. So the customs personnel ask their subordinate “XXX, give it a check”, with an unusual voice.

So the customs officer just give me the standard moodless face, and ask me to open the luggage.

Officer : What is inside

Me : A desktop computer

Officer : Can you open it.

To his suprise, I open the package within 5 seconds (duh, it is sign of NOTHING TO HIDE).

Officer : (scrambling the desktop PC and messing up with the padding, and pretend to show some “knowledge”), wow, it is rather old computer,

Me : Yupe, it is for demo purpose (in my mind : !@#!%, if you f*cking know nothing, just shut your mouth, the desktop PC is equip with a 3Ghz CPU, Ultra 320 RAID SCSI disks. 2GB RAM ).

Officer : (Point at a Netgear switch). What is this.

Me : It is a equipment to connect to all the computer.

Officer : (Look more clueless to other IT stuff and realise he better stop messing his knowledge and turn to my personal luggage). What was that?

Me : (Open the bag), my personnel belongings, cloths.

Officer : Ok. (open the bag, and find there is nothing interesting about unwash cloth. Well, he did a good duties to dig his hand in there )

Officer : Ok. Next time just declare your computer at the custom.

Me : (with the dumbf*cking looks). You mean I need to declare computing equipment when I bring it out of the country?

Officer : Yes. Just go to the custom and fill in the form. When come back to Malaysia, you can just show us the form.

Me : (As a typical Malaysia that reluctant to argue with any government officers ) Ok. Thanks.

Guess what I am looking after reach home. Since I’ve travel many time with the system, and no other airport customs has asking so many question about IT equipment, so I browse through Malaysia Royal custom tourist information page , to check is there a way to speed up things.

To my suprised, Computer equipments is “NON-DUTIABLE GOODS”, which mean it is not subject of declaration.

Is the customs officer trying to safe face during the checking? Or the airport customs just has their rule change? As typical Malaysia, I know “semua boleh”.