KARACHI: The Global Shield Programme meeting held in Dushanbe deliberated upon the measures to make secure import, export and shipping of chemicals particularly PGS chemicals. Pakistan Customs was represented by Muhammad Azam Khan, Maqbool Ahmed Baloch and Mohammad Shuja Rizvi.

Representatives from relevant bodies of India, Tajikistan, Afghanistan, Kirgizstan, Kazakhstan and Pakistan attended the forum. However, China did not attend the meeting. It may be mentioned here that China is the major producers of PG Chemicals.

During their presentation, team Pakistan Customs informed that the major laws associated to exportation, importation and shipping of these chemicals included Import Policy Order, Export Policy Order, Customs Act 1969 and Control of Narcotic Substance Act.

The presentation informed that Pakistan was a big importer of several chemicals including Acetone, Ammonium Nitrate, Calcium Magnesium, Hydrogen Peroxide, Potassium Nitrate, Potassium Perchlorate and Sodium Chlorate Powder. M/s Fauji Cement imported 12.886 tons of Acetone and 60.831 tons of Potassium Nitrate, M/s D.G Khan Cement, M/s Attock Cement and M/s Lucky Cement imported a cumulative of 1287 tons of Ammonium Nitrate. It is interesting to note that the said chemical is not used in cement manufacturing.

M/s Mirror Traders imported 25 tons of Calcium Magnesium, M/s Jawad Impex imported 1904.862 tons of Hydrogen Peroxide, M/s Abbot Laboratories imported 886KG of Potassium Perchlorate and M/s World Logistic imported 3.6 tons of Sodium Chlorate Powder.

The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) is strongly pursuing the World Customs Organisation (WCO) programme ‘Global Shield’ to prevent entry of chemicals intended to be used in improvised explosive devices (IEDs).

It may be mentioned here that series of training workshops were organized for officers of various government departments, ministries and allied bodies under the auspices of World Customs Organization (WCO) Global Shield Program, which aims to thwart the smuggling of precursor chemicals that could be used to build improvised explosive devices (IEDs).

Program Global Shield has three main goals that it seeks to accomplish including: to identify and interdict falsely declared explosive precursor chemicals; to initiate investigations of smuggled or illegally diverted IED materials; and to uncover the smuggling and procurement networks that foster illicit trade.

It may be recalled that then Collector Appraisement East Najeeb Abbasi and Deputy Collector Qasim Khokar had identified 14 chemicals that could be used in terrorist activities and a report in this regard was sent to FBR.

These chemicals include Acetic Anhydride, Aluminum Powder, Calcium Ammonium Nitrate, Nitric Acid, Nitromethane, Potassium Chlorate, Sodium Nitrate, Urea, Acetone, Ammonium Nitrate, Calcium Magnesium, Hydrogen Peroxide, Potassium Nitrate, Potassium Perchlorate and Sodium Chlorate Powder.