KARACHI: The Collectorate of Customs Port Mohammad bin Qasim has recovered Rs4.4 million from two wheat importers, which was imposed by Customs Adjudication for violating conditions of Import Policy Order and procedural requirements.

According to details, the importers M/s Al Noor and M/s Thara International imported consignments of milling wheat and sought clearance. The consignments were physically examined and found to be wheat in bulk.

The import of wheat is subjected to certification as per Import Policy Order 2013 requiring compliance of health and safety requirements including Pre-Shipment Inspection (PSI) by approved agencies verified under quarantine by the department of Plant Protection, a sub-ordinate office of Ministry of Food Security & Research by issuing Plant Protection Release Order (PPRO).

However, the importers only submitted one of the mandatory requirements of PSI certificate, but did not produce PPRO.

At the hearing before Adjudication, the importers accepted failure in submitting PPRO submitting that they were not aware of the requirement and they were never asked to submit the subject certificate. Moreover, they submitted PPRO for their subsequent consignments.

Customs Adjudication observed that the importers and their clearing agents clearly violated condition of Import Policy Order and procedural requirements. Accordingly in view of the foregoing and the fact that goods have been taken out of the Customs area and due to the consumable nature of goods, physical possession (seizure/confiscation) of goods at this stage is doubtful.

The importers were imposed a penalty of Rs2.0 million each along with fine of Rs200,000 on each of their clearing agents.

The Collectorate has recovered fine and penalty.