Pulses, edible oil imports stuck at port awaiting SRO
KARACHI: Importers of pulses, edible oil and seeds said that they are unable to clear their consignments from the port because duty and tax relief related Statutory Regulatory Orders (SRO) have still not been issued. “On March 30, the government had decided on to bring advance tax on import of pulses to zero from two per cent and exemption of two per cent additional customs duty on oil seeds and palm oil imports”, Patron in Chief, Karachi Wholesalers Grocers Association (KWGA), Anis Majeed said. In a statement, Anis Majeed said that the government had reduced 2% advance income tax on Pulses and 2% additional duty on edible oil and seeds for alleviating the adverse impact of Covid-19 and lockdown. “Our members are waiting for the SRO so that they can get duty relief on pulses imports,” he pointed out KWGA chief further said he has taken up the matter with Chief Collector of Customs. She responded that as soon as she gets any information, the decision would be announced on the Customs website, he added. “A number of importers are confused whether to clear their consignments of pulses while few of them are trying to clear their goods as they believe that not releasing pulses may create shortage in the markets at a time when buying of pulses and other essential items have surged sharply on rising demand from ration providers to the poor people”, he added. He claimed that 400-500 containers of various pulses are awaiting clearance, while importers of oil seeds are also double minded as they are not clearing 32,000 tonnes of canola seed that landed at Karachi Port and another 64,000 tonnes at Port Qasim. Anis Majeed has requested to issue SRO, so that Importers can get relief of Prime Minister announcement and can pass on this to masses.