Customs Intelligence and Investigation seizes 139,000 liters of smuggled diesel

QUETTA: Customs Intelligence and Investigation Quetta has recovered 139,000 liters of smuggled diesel of Iran origin from several vehicles, which was being transported to various distribution centers in the country.

The value of the seized commodity comes to Rs10.7 million approximately. The vehicles used in the transportation of the smuggled diesel have also been seized by the authorities.

Director I&I Quetta Muhammad Ismail and Deputy Director Amjad Rajpar focused their activities on the smuggling of petroleum products. Cases have been registered and investigations are underway.

Prime Minister Imran Khan has approved a comprehensive action plan against illegal petrol retail outlets in three provinces and halt smuggling of petroleum products at the border stations in Balochistan.

Customs officials informed the premier that the estimated loss, due to the illegal selling of petroleum products to the national exchequer, is in the range of Rs100 billion to Rs150bn per annum.

It is not clear how much Iranian fuel is smuggled into Pakistan, but a 2015 estimate suggested it could be some 700,000 liters daily. Last year, Iranian officials estimated up to 11 million liters of fuel is smuggled out of their oil-rich country each day.

An official said there had been information that oil marketing companies (OMCs) were involved in the business of smuggled petroleum products, and when raids were conducted at various depots and tankers were intercepted, there were hints that the information was true.

The drivers of several tankers transporting smuggled goods presented receipts and delivery orders issued by OMCs such as Byco Petroleum, but the OMCs when contacted, disowned the goods and declared their receipts to be forged and fake.

“It seems Oil Marketing Companies (OMCs) were dealing in smuggled petroleum products and were issuing their invoices and delivery orders, but whenever the consignments were caught, they disowned the goods and denied the authenticity of the invoices.

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