SHC adjourns identical petitions till Aug 22 against Custom valuation

KARACHI: A divisional bench of High Court of Sindh (SHC) comprising Justice Munib Akhtar and Justice Anwar Hussain on Friday adjourned hearing of two identical petitions challenging assessment of consignments under Valuation Guide Lines instead of Valuation Rulings.

One of the petitions was filed by R.H Enterprise, importers of mobile chargers through their counsel Ghulamullah Sheikh. The petitioner relying upon a judgment by the SHC maintained that SHC has already declared “Valuation Guidelines” illegal and hence his consignment be assessed and cleared as per Valuation Ruling. He maintained that by assessing the consignment on Valuation Guidelines, respondent Pakistan Custom Valuation is demanding customs duty 600 per cent more.

He prayed to the court to order that his consignment be assessed on the basis of 90 days data. R.H. Enterprises petitioner maintains that it imports mobile phone chargers from China and Customs was clearing the consignment at a rate of US $ 12 cents per piece but suddenly they issued a Valuation Guideline and raised custom duty, taxes to 70 cents per piece which translate into 500-600 per cent raise.

Hearing another but identical petition filed by Yahoo Computers which imported HDML cable, the bench after hearing identical arguments were advanced by the counsel for the petitioner adjourned hearing till Aug 22 asking both the sides to seek instructions from the respective clients.

The petitioner Yahoo Corporation, importer of HDML cable  maintains that previously Customs was taking a duty of US  $ 2 per cable but suddenly started charging US $ 9 per cable which again is 400-500 per cent raise.

The counsel maintains that Customs Valuation is bound to issue a Valuation Ruling after exhausting procedure according to section 25 of the Customs Act 1969. The superior court has already declared Valuation Guidelines illegal, it was maintained while praying to the court to declare the valuation guideline as illegal and also increased rate of custom duty and taxes as illegal being issued in violation of section 25 of Customs Act 1969.

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