The Customs & Excise Department (CED) is one of the oldest tax-collecting organisations and border protection agencies in Singapore, having started operation as the Government Monopolies Department in 1910. It has undergone numerous changes in its 90-year history.
The first duties CED imposed were on hard liquors and opium. Over the years, the range of dutiable goods expanded to include motor vehicles, liquor, tobacco products and petroleum. Aside from collecting revenue, CED worked closely with other government departments, such as the Central Narcotics Bureau, to safeguard Singapore’s welfare and security. The introduction of the Goods and Services Tax (GST) on 1 April 1994 further broadened CED’s job scope.
CED introduced a dual-channel traveller clearance system at Changi Airport in 1991 to simplify the passenger clearance process and save travellers' time. The Red and Green Channels system of clearing incoming travellers was subsequently extended to all entry checkpoints in Singapore.