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COVID-19 TOTAL DAILY
CASES 312,263 747
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ISLAMABAD: The closure of Pak-China border (Sust Dry Port), Western Border and lesser imports has impacted the import duty collection of Federal Board of Revenue's (FBR) Customs Region (North) during August 2020 as it resulted in customs duty collection of Rs 1,055 million during August, 2020 against the assigned target of Rs1,151 million, reflecting a nominal shortfall of Rs 96 million.

In line with the vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan to curb the menace of smuggling, Federal Board of Revenue's (FBR) Customs Region (North) seized goods worth Rs 415.37 million during August 2020.

The seized goods included non-duty paid (NDP) vehicles, dry/fresh fruits, gold bars, foreign origin fabric, foreign currency, tyres, electronics and other miscellaneous goods.

The Customs Region (North) comprises four Collectorates i.e., Model Customs Collectorates of Islamabad, Gilgit-Baltistan, MCC (Appraisement & Facilitation), Peshawar and MCC (Enforcement & Compliance), Peshawar covering Islamabad/ Rawalpindi, the whole of KP as well as the merged districts of erstwhile Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA). The performance of the MCC Islamabad and MCC (Enforcement & Compliance), Peshawar stood exceptional with regard to anti-smuggling during the month of August, 2020.

MCC Islamabad was able to seize goods and NCP Vehicles worth Rs 90.4 million during the month of August, 2020. Similarly, MCC (Enforcement & Compliance), Peshawar seized goods and NCP Vehicles worth Rs 324.97 million (including a mega case of gold worth Rs 90 million at Torkham Border), betal nuts Rs 46 million and currency worth Rs 3.97 million in spite of the fact that transportation of smuggled goods was considerably reduced due to closure of Western Border and markets for the last couple of months and fencing of Pak-Afghan border in KP.

On the revenue side, Customs Region (North) collected Rs 1,055 million as Customs Duty during August, 2020 against the assigned target of Rs 1,151 million. The shortfall of Rs 96 million was mainly because of closure of Sust Border and lesser imports owing to economic slowdown as a result of Covid-19 pandemic. As regards collection of all taxes, Customs Region

(North) collected Rs 2,457 million during August, 2020.

It is pertinent to mention that considerable number of these cases were made on specific information pertaining to smuggled goods kept in concealment or mixed with other goods.

Moreover, ever since joining of Javed Ghani as Chairman FBR and Syed Tariq Huda as Member Customs (Operations), strict directives were issued to all the enforcement formations to utilize and mobilize all resources for affecting mega cases and curbing the menace of smuggling in close coordination and liaison with other law enforcement agencies. It is pertinent to mention that senior Officers of the Board personally monitor performance of the field formations on daily basis with regard to revenue collection and anti-smuggling operations. In line with these directions, field formations of North Region made all out efforts and geared up anti-smuggling operations for affecting mega cases and achieving maximum revenue.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020