SIALKOT: Model Customs Collectorate Sialkot’s Collector Qurban Ali Khan has assured that all the prolonged perturbing problems of Sialkot’s business community would be solved on priority besides ensuring an early end to the prolonged pendency of the rebate payments claims as well.
He said this while addressing an important meeting of Sialkot’s leading exporters held at the Sialkot Dry Port Trust. The meeting was jointly organised by Pakistan Customs and Sialkot Dry Port Trust to find out the communication gap amongst the stakeholders including the exporters, importers, cargo and customs clearing agents and the authorities concerned.
As many as 22,801 rebate payment claims of Sialkot-based exporters worth of Rs 1.645 billion have been lying pending at Model Customs Collectorate of Sialkot since long, while 17,309 cases of rebate payments worth Rs 1.148 billion have been disposed of by ensuring the payments to the claimants.
The Collector pledged to ensure early clearance of prolonged pending rebate cases of Sialkot exporters, saying that pendency of such cases was being wiped out by Pakistan Customs in Sialkot.
On the occasion, the Collector assured to provide all the necessary facilities to the Sialkot-based exporters and importers besides removing hurdles in motivating them to do their business through Sialkot Dry Port and Sialkot International Airport, saying that the time was ripe to provide all the trade-related incentives to Sialkot’s exporters, importers, cargo and customs clearing agents while also asking them to enhance the exports from Sialkot through Sialkot Dry Port and Sialkot International Airport.
During the meeting Qurban Ali Khan briefed the participants in detail on Pakistan Customs’ facilitation schemes including Duties and Taxes Remission on Exports, manufacturing bonds, private bonds, EOUs, EPZ and guarantee. He said that Federal Board of Revenue and Pakistan Customs were introducing the business-friendly policies for encouraging the business community to struggle hard for promoting the national exports with full devotion, dedication, enthusiasm and an atmosphere with peace of mind.
The meeting was cautioned about the reduced exports from Sialkot Dry Port as the export volume remained Rs 88.04 billion during FY 2013-14 while it was to the tune of Rs 97.19 billion during the FY 2012-13 during ten months. A visible decline in exports from Sialkot Dry Port was due to several reasons including the fact that the Sialkot-based exporters were preferably exporting their shipments from other dry ports of the country instead of Sialkot Dry Port.
Export consignments from Sialkot worth of Rs 90 billion were forwarded from other dry ports and airports of the country instead.
Chairman Sialkot Dry Port Trust Muhammad Ishaq Butt told the meeting that all out sincere efforts were being made to provide the maximum facilities to Sialkot’s exporters and importers at the dry port.
Addressing the meeting, Senior Vice President Sialkot Chamber of Commerce and Industry Mian Muhammad Anwar urged the immediate provision of the proper mechanism of WeBOC system at MCC Sialkot, saying that the systems had been launched almost a year ago, but it was not yet functional properly, due to which Sialkot’s business community was much perturbed.
The participants also expressed grave concerns over the improper checking system of the export consignments by the Anti Narcotics Force (ANF), saying that the ANF officials ruthlessly tore the exports consignments’ packets and did not repack them leaving the torn packets in the containers. They said that the foreign buyers were much annoyed due to this unfair checking of ANF, stressing the need of bringing betterment in the ANF’s checking procedures for export consignments.
Chairman Pakistan Leather Garments Manufacturers and Exporters Association Mian Muhammad Anwar, Ahmed Zulfiqar Hayyat, Irfanul Rehman Khan (Additional Collectors MCC Sialkot), Asdaq Afzaal, Farrukh Sharif, Shahid Malik (Deputy Collectors MCC Sialkot), Syed Karim Aadil and Shamas Wazir Khan (Assistant Collectors MCC Sialkot), leading exporters and, cargo and customs clearing agents also attended the meeting.