KARACHI: The Sindh High Court has set aside several judgements issued by the Customs Appellate Tribunal that allowed importers to have their goods assessed at their declared value instead of the values determined after thorough research by Directorate of Customs Valuation. Most importers evade duty and taxes by under declaring the values of imported goods.

Certain tyre and tubes importers had approached Appellate Tribunal challenging Valuation Rulings No. 1700/2022, 1701/2022 and 1702/2022.

The Tribunal, comprising Member Technical Imtiaz Ahmed Shaikh and Member Judicial Mazhar Ali Ghallu, had suspended certain Valuation Rulings issued by the Directorate of Customs Valuation and ordered that imports should be assessed under Section 25A of the Customs Act, 1969, which provides that the imports will be assessed on the importer declared value.

The Directorate of Customs Valuation, headed by Director Fayyaz Rasool, has challenged the orders of the Tribunal in the High Court, arguing that they are faulty and illegal. The Directorate has also issued directives to revisit old Valuation Rulings and issue fresh valuations for the imported goods. Fayyaz Rasool has warned all groups that no Valuation Ruling older than two years should be used, and data of all such rulings is being collected and analyzed on his instructions.

The Sindh High Court, after hearing the arguments of the Directorate of Customs Valuation, represented by Sardaz Zafar Hussain Advocate and Assistant Collector Tariq Aziz, suspended the judgements of the Customs Appellate Tribunal.

Tribunal has exceeded its jurisdiction and violated the principles of natural justice by issuing the judgements without giving proper opportunity to the Directorate of Customs Valuation to present its case.

The importers, who have obtained judgements in their favor, have claimed undue benefits and evaded government revenue by under declaring the values of imported goods.

According to an official of the Directorate of Customs Valuation, the national kitty is deprived of billions of rupees in this manner. He said that the Directorate is committed to safeguarding the national interest and ensuring fair valuation of imported goods. He also appreciated the efforts of Fayyaz Rasool and his team for pursuing the cases in the High Court and exposing the malpractices of the importers and the Tribunal.