KARACHI: Chief Collector Enforcement South has constituted a 6-member committee to investigate the mega scam involving export of gold jewelry on fake and forged documents.

Collector Exports Karachi Saifuddin Junejo would head the subject committee while Additional Collectors Ashir Azeem, Tahir Qureshi, Farrukh Sahhad, Raza are the members and Deputy Collector Muhamad Rizwan would be the secretary.

The Committee would determine all the illegalities in the import/export of gold jewelry under the scheme prescribed by SRO 266(I)/2001.

The Petroleum and Customs External Audit of Auditor General of Pakistan has reported that abuse of schemes regarding duty free import of gold for the purpose of re-export after value addition caused a substantial loss to the national kitty to the tune of billions.

MCC Port Qasim has already arrested some accused involved in this scam while several FIRs have been lodged.

‘Entrustment’ and the ‘Self Consignment’ schemes were envisaged for the import of gold, for its subsequent export after converting it into value-added jewelry, without payment of normal import tariff subject to fulfillment of certain terms and conditions of the Schemes.

There have been serious apprehensions that these Schemes for duty-free import of gold are being abused by some importers and exporters and the national interest is being damaged.

The duty-free gold being was not being converted into value-added jewelry nor it was being exported causing loss to the national exchequer as exports were decreasing and imports were jumping.

It is pertinent to mentioned that in the year 2013, the import of gold into Pakistan, under these schemes witnessed an enormous surge, which is highly abnormal. During the January to June, 2013 gold worth Rs92.970 billion was imported compared to Rs19.132 billion in the same period in the year 2012.

The trend became even more alarming since in the first 26 days of July 2013, the import of gold under these schemes was to the tune of Rs52.549 billion.