LAHORE: The users of the Export Facilitation Scheme (EFS) have approached the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) seeking a direction to all collectors of Customs to immediately allow clearance of goods of manufacturers-cum-exporters working simultaneously as direct and indirect exporters.

They have also sought a direction for the Directorate General of Automation and Reforms to modify their indirect export module and include the manufacturers-cum-exporters category in the module to do away with the practice of seeking approval from regulatory collector, said sources.

It may be noted that the EFS was promulgated vide SRO No 957(I)/2021 dated 30-07-2021 by the FBR to facilitate all categories of exporters including direct and indirect exporters.

EFS modules: exporters seekuser-friendly changes

The definition of “export” in the said scheme was included “supply of goods by an indirect exporter to a direct exporter” and the term “indirect exporter” was defined as a person who has a firm contract on export purchase order from a direct exporter or commercial exporter for the manufacture and supply of goods to such exporter.

The scheme liberally had allowed removal of goods from one EFS user to another user as was allowed under DTRE and other export schemes.

According to the sources, the Board had allowed manual processing of documents of indirect exporters till the development of indirect export module to remove the difficulties of indirect exporters in the month of February this year. The requisite module was rolled out last month. However, they added, it covered only those indirect exporters who were registered solely as indirect exporter and manufacturers cum exporters engaged in both direct and indirect export could not be included in the said module.

According to the sources, most of the exporters are hybrid exporters engaged in exports of goods both as direct and indirect exporters. Transactions of such categories of exporters were still continuing subject to approval from collector even after launching of module.

However, some of the upcountry Collectorates have either suddenly stopped clearance of goods or kept pending approvals of indirect exporters falling in category of manufacturers-cum-exporters on flimsy procedural grounds and asking them to get separate approval since early April. Such stoppage of exports has started causing unnecessary delays.

Therefore, the stakeholders have written a letter to the Board for an early address of the issue, followed by necessary steps by the Board which are likely to be materialised by the end of Eid holidays, said the sources.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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