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ISLAMABAD: The Federal Tax Ombudsman (FTO) is expected to issue an important order on Friday (December 9) for the possible release of a huge quantity of the stuck-up consignments of imported soybean feed for the poultry sector at Port Qasim, Karachi.

Nine ships carrying 0.48million metric tons of soybean and 0.12 million MT of canola have been blocked by Customs and are waiting for clearing.

The FTO office held a detailed hearing on the case at the FTO Secretariat on Thursday which was attended by officials of the Revenue Division; Ministry of Food Security and Research; secretary Ministry of Climate Change; director general Directorate General of Intelligence and Investigation-Customs; Chief Customs (F&C), Federal Board of Revenue, and Pakistan Poultry Association.

The FTO has heard the viewpoint of all the stakeholders and would announce an order on Friday, sources said.

The FTO has conducted an investigation of the said complaint and the hearing of the subject complaint was completed at the FTO Secretariat.

Soybean consignments: FTO takes suo motu notice

The Directorate of Intelligence and Investigation (l&l) Customs categorically conveyed to the FTO that the agency has not stopped the imported consignments but only passed on the information to the concerned Department of Plant Protection. The directorate has asked the Department of Plant Protection to ensure that any health hazard material should not be cleared under the name of imported soybeans.

There is a need for permission from the plant protection department for clearance of the imported consignments of poultry feed, but the consignments were released during the last four years on a case-to-cases basis. The industry has already applied for permission from the plant protection department which has not been processed so far.

The Pakistan Poultry Association informed the FTO about the current situation of the Poultry Feed Mills to continue their production because of the non-availability of soybean and soybean meal which is the most essential feed ingredient.

The price of the presently available limited stock of soybean meal is skyrocketing, also all the Feed Mills of Pakistan will run out of soybean meal stock, in one week from now, resulting in the manufacturing of feed without soybean meal and that feed will not support the growth of broilers and production of eggs in layer birds resulting into a shortage of broiler meat and eggs in the country within two weeks from now, which eventually would result in a threat to national food security.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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