Departing yachts mark successful seasonCustoms
Customs Minister Nicky Wagner says the departure of hundreds of yachts from northern ports marks the end of a successful season for Customs.
Customs cleared 380 yachts to enter New Zealand over spring and summer, making sure crew aren’t carrying prohibited goods or doing anything illegal. Of those 210 have now departed, with 102 leaving from Opua, 63 from Whangarei and 45 from Auckland.
“Our customs officers do a vital job at our marine border to make sure visitors and returning kiwis are complying with all requirements. Customs makes compliance easy to do and hard to avoid.
“This season Customs encountered an array of issues, including a wanted criminal trying to stowaway, an endangered gecko smuggled from Tonga, and an Indonesian national without a visa,” Ms Wagner says.
A requirement on yachties to depart the country after one year was changed to two years in late 2013.
“The extension of time has been well received, as it allows visitors to enjoy the country while having their boats refitted and repaired by our renowned marine industry,” Ms Wagner says.