In the first six months of this year, south China's Guangdong Province reported 4,167 smuggling cases, valued at 1.49 billion yuan (US$219 million), with grain, fuel oil and cooking oil as the main snuggled items.
"This situation resulted from the energy shortage and rising price of crude oil in the world market," said Luo Ou, director of the Provincial Anti-smuggling Office, at a meeting for combating smuggling on Wednesday.
"The gap of grain prices between the domestic and international markets also contributes. The international grain price is four times the domestic one."
The cases of smuggling grain, fertilizers and steel are also on a rise nationwide, said Li Xiaowu, vice director of the National Anti-smuggle Office, at the meeting.
Li said, in the first half of the year, the smuggling cases of grain in China increased by eight times year on year. The amount of smuggled grain was 40 times as much as that of the same period last year.
The Pearl River Delta, the Yangtze River Delta and the Beibu Bay saw more than 70 percent of the country's smuggling cases.
In Guangdong, Shenzhen saw half of the province's total cases during the first half of the year, in which the city reported 2,295 ones.
The Anti-smuggle Offices in Guangzhou, Shantou and Zhuhai said the trafficking of edible palm oil has become a new issue that needs government concerns.
(Xinhua News Agency July 24, 2008)