Import of hazardous waste; Customs serve Contravention on importers

Import of hazardous waste; Customs serve Contravention on importers

KARACHI: Customs has served contravention on four importers as they were mis-declaring the description and HS Code of imported goods to circumvent the provisions of import policy order. The contravention reports have been served against M/s Pioneer Pipe Industries, M/s Pioneer Industries, M/s A.M Pipe Industries and M/s Royal Plastics for importing goods which are considered hazardous waste. It may be mentioned here that Pakistan Customs has blocked 130 containers of PVC recycled flakes which are suspected to be containing PVC scrap, which is prohibited to be importer as per the provisions of Import Policy Order. Several importers imported consignments declared to contain “PVC Recycled Flakes” and electronically filed Goods Declaration and sought clearance of the goods under PCT Heading 3902.9000. Scrutiny of the GDs in the light of the foregoing E/R transpired that although the goods have been declared as ‘PVC Recycled Flakes’ under HS Code 3902.9000, this HS Code is meant for ‘Plastics in Primary form’ and is not meant for ‘recycled plastics’. Images attached with the E/R reveal that the instant goods are in fact ‘used plastic pipes crushed into flakes’. As such, the goods are correctly classifiable under 3915.9000 i.e. as ‘waste and parings and scrap of plastics’. Goods falling under HS Code 3915.9000 are hit by restrictive regime of the Basel convention on hazardous substances which are prohibited to be imported under Import Policy Order. Since the importer did not agree with the above plea of the Department and insisted that his goods fall under HS Code 3902.9000, as declared in the GD, in order to resolve the dispute, representative samples of the goods were drawn and forwarded to Custom House Laboratory Karachi. However, the laboratory issued test report in the favor of importers. However, Collector MCC Port Qasim Mukarram Jah took a stand and formed a team comprising Additional Collectors Khalil Yousafzai and Mohammad Tahir, Deputy Collector Mohammad Ahmed, Principal Appraiser Khalid Umar and Appraising Officers Rana Nasir and Khurram. The team raised several questions for the Customs Laboratory pertaining to the first test report. After these questions, the Laboratory issued another report confirming the imported goods were actually plastic scrap. The importers had filed 70 GDs for which Contravention reports are being served while GDs for 60 containers were not filed. Sources said that it was being further investigated that how many such consignments were cleared in the past and hazardous waste was dumped into the country posing severe threats to the people and environment of the country.
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