Customs suspends clearance of liquor imported by foreign companies operating in Pakistan

KARACHI: The Model Customs Collectorate of Appraisement-East has hold the clearance of foreign liquor imported by companies for their foreign employees and a reference has been sent to Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) seeking instructions for further action.
According to details available with Customnews.pk, three companies namely M/s Karakow, M/s Qatar Airways and M/s DKT Pakistan imported liquor for their employees. Farrukh Salim of M/s International Impex, former president of Karachi Customs Agents Association (KCCA), sought clearance of the subject consignments. However, Collector Appraisement East, Najeeb Abbasi held the clearance.
Following which Farrukh Saleem reiterating their claim of entitlement in terms of PCT Heading 9903 referred to FBR’s letter C.No. 10(14)/93-ICM-CON dated 13.06.1994 and Article-13 of the Model Petroleum Concession Agreement 2009.
Import of liquor is categorically banned as per the Import Policy Order (IPO), this ban is not applicable, to the goods which are exempt from custom duties on importation by the Foreign Diplomatic Missions in Pakistan under the Diplomatic and Consular Privileges Act, 1972.
The subject three consignments of liquor have been imported by three foreign based companies reportedly for their foreigner employees working in Pakistan. None of these three importers do fall within the aforesaid admissible category of the Import Policy Order.
However, the above referred FBR’s letter allows import of liquor only to the foreign employees of petroleum sector companies working in Pakistan. But, this order cannot override the aforesaid mandatory provisions of the lPO.
Furthermore, that permission is also subject to the condition that no foreign exchange from Pakistan is involved while PCT Heading 9903 allows import of liquor only to the privileged personnel/organizations under grant-in-aid agreements signed by the Economic Affairs Division (BAD) of the Government of Pakistan.

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