70 per cent fall in import of mobile phones -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

70 per cent fall in import of mobile phones

KARACHI, Jan 15: Import of mobile phones registered a drastic fall during the first six months (July-Dec) of the current fiscal year when only 1.788 million sets were imported as against 5.924 million in the corresponding period last year.

The fall of around 70 per cent in import of mobile phones is being reported owing to customs and regularity duties. According to official figures, customs authorities collected Rs620 million in customs duty on import of 1.788 million mobile phone sets, having a total import value of Rs8.047 billion during July-Dec period of 2008.

The federal government in the last budget imposed Rs500 customs duty per set and later imposed Rs250 regulatory duty (R&D) in August 2008. Though this helped the Federal Board of Revenue to collect around Rs620 million in customs duty and Rs90 million in R&D on import of 1.788 million sets during the last six months, it equally encouraged smuggling of mobile phones, and the shortfall is being reportedly met through smuggling.

Last year the country imported 20.238 billion sets during July-December, but the same declined to 1.788 million.

The import of mobile phones is being made through air freight and according to official figures, all air freight units of the country have recorded a steep fall in imports.

According to details, the Karachi Air Freight Unit (KAFU) recorded import of 3,57179 mobile phone sets during the first six months (July-Dec) of the current fiscal as against 1,765,695 imported in the same period in the last fiscal year. There is a fall of 97 per cent in imports.

Similarly, import through Lahore Air Freight Unit (LAFU) recorded import of 1,319,826 during July-Dec 2008 as against 4,126,597 sets imported in the same period last fiscal.

The Peshawar Air Freight Unit (PAFU) cleared 258 mobile phone sets during July-Dec 2008 period this fiscal compared to 5,122 sets recorded in the same period in the last fiscal year. This shows a fall of 95 per cent in imports.

Source: Dawn

Date:1/16/2009