LAHORE: With the passage of time smuggling is progressing which has dangerously ruined the economic health of the country and the government has failed to arrest the menace completely.
This was stated by Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry President Sohail Lashari while exclusively talking to Customs Today here.
The president said that smuggling has been gaining momentum ever since the very inception of the country but presently it has become a greater menace as the smugglers have got well-equipped.
“The smuggled goods and articles are cleared at the ports but afterward the same department’s agencies including customs investigation and intelligence starts indulging the businessmen in undue verification of documents and document of the freight carriers which have nothing to do with the import of goods but carry them to the place ordered by the importers,” Lashari expressed.
He said smuggling has not only been destroying the local industry by dumping markets with goods bought in on throw away prices by the smugglers but also discouraging the importers who are legally bringing in goods. The government has failed to play its part in overcoming the grave issue.
“Our institutions and businessmen are badly smashed due to the ever-rising smuggling. So many goods are being smuggled from China into Pakistan but there is no one to question the smuggler. Instead genuine businessmen are being harassed,” Lashari pointed out.
Selling of smuggled goods in the markets destroys the investment of original business people who properly pay taxes. This is a discouraging scenario, the president highlighted.
“Government has to undertake ruthless crackdown on smugglers. Half-hearted steps would not do any good,” the president said.
Business community also needs to adopt the honest practice of importing goods in the market, giving a level playing field to their fellows, Lashari concluded.