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ICCI calls for strong measures to curb smuggling

July 9, 2019

Islamabad, July 09, 2019 (PPI-OT): The Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry has called upon the government to take strong measures to curb smuggling as the economy was suffering revenue loss of billions of rupees per annum due to growing phenomenon of smuggling.

Ahmed Hassan Moughal President, Rafat Farid Senior Vice President and Iftikhar Anwar Sethi Vice President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry said that a World Bank report had estimated revenue loss of Pakistan of $35 billion during 2000-2009 on account of smuggling, which showed that smuggling was causing huge losses to our economy that should be a cause of concerns for the policymakers. They said that instead of levying new taxes, government should launch strong efforts to curb smuggling as it was a major hurdle in improving tax revenue of the country.

Ahmed Hassan Moughal said that many products were entering Pakistani market through smuggling due to which the business community doing legal business was also suffering great losses. He said an investigative study of Pakistan Customs on smuggling had revealed alarming statistics as it estimated that 59% of the total demand for products of over half a dozen sectors of the formal economy including petroleum, tea, mobile phones and auto parts industry was met through illicit trade of smuggled goods.

He said the Model Customs Collectorate (MCC) Preventive, Karachi had investigated 13 commodities prone to smuggling in Pakistan for fiscal year 2014 and concluded that 11 of them were badly impacted due to illegal trade. He said the same study had estimated that the share of smuggled tyres in Pakistan stood at 59 percent, tea 47 percent, mobile phones 59 percent, television 57 percent, auto parts 57 percent, steel sheets 10 percent, vehicles 12 percent, fabrics 17 percent, diesel 33 percent, cigarettes 3 percent and plastic granules 11 percent.

ICCI President said that the role of customs officials was key to control smuggling, but the corruption and bribery were major hurdles in such efforts. He said that many countries have curbed smuggling by utilizing latest technology and urged that the Government of Pakistan should also exploit new technology to cope with this issue. He said that under-invoicing was also causing great revenue losses to our economy and stressed that government should evolve a new strategy to deal with under-invoicing.

For more information, contact:
Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI)
Chamber House, Aiwan-e-Sanat-o-Tijarat Road,
Mauve Area, G-8/1, Islamabad, Pakistan
Tel: +92-51-2250526, 2253145, 8432676
Fax: +92-51-2252950

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