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Government seeks to extend warehousing period of imported goods

The government proposed amendments to the Customs Act to extend the period of warehousing for perishable, non-corrupt import goods.

The changes have been proposed in the latest financial legislation. Under Article 98 of the Customs Code, non-corrupt and perishable imports may remain in the warehouse for six months and three months, respectively.

Customs recipients can extend the warranty period by three months for non-perishable products and one month for perishable products. However, the government recommends providing similar extensions to major customs authorities during warehousing.

The government also aims to appoint a chief collector to the collection authority when canceling the merchant's user ID. The ID is issued by the customs clearance system to create an import declaration or export declaration. A collector may not be able to comply with registration or other violations of customs law and may suspend or revoke a merchant's user ID.

Currently, merchants can not appeal cancellation under the Customs Act, so they must approach the higher court to challenge the decision of the collector.

The new amendment allows for penalties imposed on fixed systems through notifications in the event of a violation, such as an invoice or packing list not found with the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR)

A new section has been introduced in the Customs Code to allow customs officers to impose penalties on port authorities or terminal operators who do not provide relief to merchants from reimbursement claims at customs authorities.

Recent fiscal legislation also seeks to authorize FBR to prescribe uniforms from Pakistan customs authorities in China, Singapore, Australia, Malaysia, the United States, Iran, India and Jordan.

Current land customs officers and preventive staff up to BS-16 are wearing uniforms.

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