Carrying above $10,000 without source to be dealt under anti-money laundering laws

KARACHI: The government has prescribed a limit of foreign currency amounting above $10,000 or equivalent within Pakistan. A person carry foreign currency above this limit without explaining source may be dealt under prevailing laws including anti-money laundering.

 

 

A person carrying such amount of foreign currency within Pakistan shall be responsible to ensure that:

a) the foreign currency notes have been acquired through authorized sources.

b) the funds used for acquisition of such foreign currency are legitimate.

According to a notification of State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) on August 06, 2018, in case the person carrying foreign currency notes exceeding $ 10,000 or equivalent fails to produce the evidence to the above effect, he shall be liable for action under the provisions of Foreign Exchange Regulation Act, 1947, Anti Money Laundering Act, 2010 or any other law for the time being in force.

The SBP explained in detail about the export of foreign exchange in the Foreign Exchange Manual – 2018, under which the central bank granted a general permission, included:

(a) Authorized Dealers to send out of Pakistan, cheques, drafts or bills of exchange which have been acquired by them in the normal course of their business and within the terms of their authorization.

(b) Any person maintaining an account expressed in a foreign currency, and held under any permission, general or otherwise, granted by the State Bank of Pakistan to take or send out of Pakistan, cheques or drafts drawn on such account.

(c) Any person, other than a person to whom foreign exchange is issued for travelling purposes only, to send out of Pakistan foreign exchange issued to him by an Authorized Dealer.

(d) Any person to take out of Pakistan foreign exchange issued to him by an Authorized Dealer in Pakistan and endorsed on his passport and

(e) Any person not ordinarily resident in Pakistan, to take out of Pakistan the unspent amount of foreign currency brought by him into Pakistan, provided the period of his continuous stay in Pakistan does not exceed three months.

ii) In terms of Notification No. F.E.1/2015-SB dated June 1, 2015, State Bank has granted general permission to any person to take out of Pakistan US Dollars or equivalent thereof in other foreign currencies as per the following limit:

A minor – age up to five years – is allowed maximum limit of $1,000 per visit or annual ceiling of $6,000.

A child – from 5-18 years – is allowed maximum amount of $5,000 per visit or annual ceiling of $30,000

An adult – above 18 years – is allowed maximum amount of $10,000 per visit or annual ceiling of $60,000

As an exception, the SBP said, NGOs, UN/Other Donor Agencies would be able to draw foreign currency from their accounts without any limit for taking it to Afghanistan to the extent of such remittances.

Authorized Dealers would issue Certificates to these entities in duplicate, one copy of which would be submitted to Customs Authorities and the second would be kept by the concerned NGO/agency which would, however, be stamped by Customs Authorities as ‘Amount allowed to be taken out’.

The record of all such transactions would be kept by Authorized Dealers for SBP inspection.

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