FBR advises PIA to pay duties of Rs 25m

KARACHI: The Federal Board of Revenues (FBR) Customs Directorate of Post Clearance Audit (PCA) has detected evasion of taxes/duties amounting around Rs 25 million by Pakistan International Airlines (PIA) for misusing of the facility of Sales Tax exemption, on Thursday.

According to the copy of notice sent to the national flag carrier by the FBR, which is available with the scribe, the PCA-Karachi Directorate, during scrutiny of import data found PIA misusing of the said tax exemption facility for its various import transactions. Therefore, the FBR has advised PIA to pay the evaded amount of Rs 24.34 million immediately.

It is to be noted that the exemption for the PIA is available under SRO 575(I)/2006, that exempt importers from so much of the customs-duty, and the whole of Sales Tax leviable under the Sales Tax Act 1990.

However, a cash-starved PIA had claimed thermal paper boarding cards and airway bills under the said facility, which in fact are not entitled to the benefit of the said exemption.

Meanwhile, the PIA has not only claimed facility under S No 29 of SRO 575(I)/2006 in 42 goods, but has cleared the goods under wrong Pakistan Customs Tariff (PCT) 4821.9000 which is for paper and paper boards labels not printed.

The PCA mentioned that the imported thermal boarding passes airway bills and tags are surely printed, hence, the same are correctly classifiable under PCT 4821.1090 at customs duty at 25 percent.

The letter to the PIA added that besides, the value is also under stated in majority cases. The value of goods as per statement if calculated at the assessed rate are Rs 60,842,537 and the evaded customs duties come to Rs 15,210,634 and differential Sales Tax Rs 5,904,121 and differential Income Tax Rs 2,594,490 and special federal Excise Duty Rs 608,425 making the total evaded amount to Rs 24,317,670.

In case, if the PIA is of the opinion that the said finding is incorrect or that the short paid amount has been erroneously calculated or it has already been deposited, the PCA has given 10 working days to the corporation to submit self written answer with viable documentary evidences and complete set of import documents.

PIA Public Relations General Manager and Spokesman Daniyal Jilani terming it normal practice informed that the PIA often receives such letters by the FBR and other authorities, which are sometimes sent mistakenly or “We pay the short-lived amount rarely.”

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