SHC to hear petition seeking Weboc facility

KARACHI: Facing the surmounting demurrage charges due to inordinate delay in release of consignments from Ports of Karachi, number of importers and trade association filed petitions before High Court of Sindh seeking Weboc facility which was suspended and consignments were cleared under “One Custom” clearance system.

According to petitioners including leading petitioner All Pakistan Tiles Association represented by Franklin Law Associates, Sindh High Court hearing petitions against imposition of Regulatory Duty on more than 400 items allowed interim relief wherein release of consignments were ordered and importers of tiles were allowed to benefit from a SRO attracting custom duty and other taxes at concessionary rates.

In order to nullify the said order in favor of the importers of tiles, the Custom authorities have stopped clearing the consignments under Weboc and are assessing and clearing the consignment under “One Custom” facility. As a result the rate of clearance is very slow as 5-7 consignments are cleared daily while previously under Weboc system 50 or more consignments were cleared daily. The importers are facing a loss of rupees 0.4 to 06 million per consignment in terms of demurrage charges, the petitioners maintains praying to the court to direct the custom authorities to revert back to Weboc system saving the importers from delay as well as demurrage charges.

The petitions are likely to be heard on Friday (today) by Customs Appellate bench of SHC.

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