Smuggled goods

Sir: It is indeed a good thing that the Supreme Court (SC) has directed the customs authorities to investigate how many of the 19,000 missing containers were packed with arms and lethal weapons. However, the SC should also take into consideration the fact that the whole country is flooded with smuggled goods, which have considerably affected local industries. These smuggled items are removed from containers destined for Afghanistan and sold in the local markets. Such smuggled items could also have been in the missing containers. The court should immediately ban the sale of smuggled goods. It should ask the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) to ensure that shopkeepers buy goods only from registered importers and keep a permanent record of the customs import documents (GDRs) of all goods purchased by them. The FBR should conduct regular surveys and arrest those who sell such smuggled goods (on which no tax has been paid). This will help the FBR to substantially increase government revenue and save many local industries from closure.

Printed in Daily Times, November 4, 2013