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Licences of non-functional warehouses to be cancelled

ISLAMABAD (July 21 2005): The Central Board of Revenue (CBR) has decided to cancel the licences of all non-functional bonded warehouses, after comprehensive audit and physical stock-taking of the bonded goods.

Official sources told Business Recorder on Wednesday that the CBR has decided to computerise all bonded warehouses. However, the licences of non-functional bonded warehouses would be cancelled on the basis of audit reports.

They said that CBR is making serious efforts to computerise all bonded and state warehouses. Moreover, all terminal operators/custodians of goods, particularly at the airports, need computerised accessibility by customs department.

On the issue of automation of bonded warehouses, collectors of customs were unhappy with the performance of Pakistan Revenue Automation Limited (PRAL).

Collectors pointed out that the department was unable to furnish timely and correct data pertaining to overstayed goods. Collectorates had to do it manually whenever asked by the CBR, which is not only a cause of delay but of errors as well.

To resolve this problem, computer experts of CBR would launch a new computerised system ie, “one customs system” from August 1, 2005, in every collectorate of customs. Commenting on the issue, collectors of customs opined that 'one Customs system' already functional at Customs House, Karachi, was generating faulty and erroneous reports indicating some problem in application of software which needed rectification.

Some collectors have requested the Board for not pressing too much on the condition of I.T connectivity of a bonded warehouse with the 'customs mainframe' and stressed upon streamlining the warehousing system at Collector's level. However, tax authorities have directed the collectors to ensure that, till development of proper software by PRAL, the licensees must have their system computerised so that the warehouse licensees can send NOC for in-bonding, details of warehoused and cleared goods through e-mail and their data of shortage etc can be accessed by the visiting customs officer to ensure meaningful inspection of bond.

The CBR is also making arrangements for computerisation of all custodians/terminal operators, particularly at the airports.

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