FBR recently changed the rule that allows tourists to temporarily import vehicles without paying duties and taxes for a limited period of six months.
The FBR proposed amendments to the 2001 customs rules via a notice published here on Friday March 7, 2021
According to SRO.201 (I) / 2021, “tourist” means a person who does not normally reside in Pakistan, who enters Pakistan for a stay of no more than six months during a twelve month period for legitimate non-immigrants purposes.
Previously, the definition of a tourist under the customs legislation is that a “tourist” means a foreigner of any of the following categories who has no residence or employment in Pakistan and whose stay in the country should not exceed three months:
- A person visiting Pakistan for recreation or sight-seeing or is in transit for a short duration;
- A person travelling for domestic or health reasons;
- A person to study or lecture tour or on pilgrimage;
- A person travelling in his individual or representative capacity to attend a meeting or function of any scientific, administrative, educational, social, cultural sports or religious nature or for giving a performance;
- A person travelling for business purposes;
- A person arriving in the course of a sea cruise whose stay in Pakistan exceeds 24 hours.
According to the procedure, a tourist who imports a vehicle against a carnet-de-pass or a bank guarantee can receive the delivery of the same by the officer in charge of the customs-station entry without paying of customs duties for its storage in Pakistan if such The tourist makes a declaration at the customs-station of entry to the effect that will not constructively or substantially transfer ownership of the vehicles to any other person during his stay in Pakistan.
Provided that, if it is not possible for the tourist to export said vehicle within that period and submit a request to FBR before the expiration of that period to that effect, the Council may extend this period for no more than three months: Further provided that if the same vehicle returns to Pakistan within one year of its departure, on behalf of the same tourist (non-Pakistani) or on behalf of another person (non-Pakistani), temporary release carnet-de-passage or a bank guarantee for more than fourteen days, with the exception of vehicles operated by recognized foreign travel agencies, which will be allowed to return within one year for a period not exceeding three months at any given time.
When the export of such vehicle is not possible on grounds of the health of the importer, or in circumstances beyond his control, or due to an accident involving the vehicle, the FBR may extend the period no more than six months, during which time In the event that a new bank guarantee is provided if the existing bank guarantee does not cover the extension period: Provided that if the importer wishes to retain such vehicle beyond the period for which the permit was granted for retention, must obtain an import permit from the Ministry of Commerce and must pay the customs duties and taxes applicable on the date of its import.
If a tourist imports a vehicle for the passenger through Pakistan to a foreign destination, the entry customs officer may, in the absence of a carnet-de-pass or bank guarantee, allow the vehicle to cross Pakistan without payment of customs duties under escort from the customs office of entry to the customs office of exit by paying the escort charges which will be determined by the respective Collector. The details of the vehicle that is authorized to pass through Pakistan shall be endorsed on the passport of the importer.
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