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KARACHI: All Pakistan Customs Agents Association (APCAA) has rejected the proposal of Directorate Transit Trade (DTT) to install trackers at transhipment consignments, saying that it would create excessive financial burden on the trade.

Talking to Business Recorder here on Friday, Arshad Jamal, chairman APCAA said that DTT had convened a meeting with the representatives of the bonded carriers and informed that they were planning to expand the tracker system to the transhipment consignments as well.

He said that the department instead of discussing the issue with the stakeholders, FPCCI and other chambers of the country, took bonded carriers on board for the implementation of the tracker system to the transhipment consignments which would create excessive financial burden on the trade not on the bonded carriers. Therefore, the APCAA has rejected this proposal, demanding the DTT to take all stakeholders on board before making any decision.

The bonded carriers serve the government at transit/ transhipment and shift bonded cargoes with full responsibilities with no crime at their side and safeguard government revenues. Further, the government is securing revenues and other controls through scanners, insurance of taxes, etc, so the government should facilitate the trade at the maximum level, he said and added that APCAA would support the decision if the FPCCI and all chambers accepted the DTT proposal.

Furthermore, he said that the Directorate staff made cases based on mis-declarations, classifications, or on other charges, and the traders who have no principal offices at transit stations, faced high costs at transit ports.

Therefore, the government should allow transit/ transhipment without examination on profile basis through green channel and scanning processes and the examination should also go down from 5 percent to 1 percent, chairman APCAA said.

He said that APCAA has proposed the directorate to submit their findings and contraventions reports to the concerned customs station (dry port) and allow transhipment without delay.

And if the authorities hold the shipment at the transit port, the concerned directorate may shift such goods to the customs bonded CPF warehouse or any public customs bonded warehouse on a case-to-case basis and release the shipping container except the banned items.

Moreover, the importers or their authorised agents might be allowed to transfer their goods in their owned containers under the supervision of the customs officials at port areas or customs bonded warehouses for the safety of goods.

In addition, all customs agents should be allowed to handle and can get facilitated for transit/ transhipment of goods subject to if they have valid custom agent licenses on an all Pakistan basis and incorporated with SECP and they have a transport fleet of a minimum of 25 trailers/trucks on an ownership/hire basis up to 2 years with any reputed transport company and have a contract with Afghan importers duly attested by Afghan Consulate, he added.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021