IR officers to get information of importers through online customs system

IR officers to get information of importers through online customs system

KARACHI: The officers of Inland Revenue to access online system of customs clearance for monitoring of withholding tax collected from importers.

The sources in Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) said that the Collectors of Customs of Sea Ports/Dry Ports are obliged to collect withholding tax on imports as per prescribed rates.

In the case of goods/equipments imported through Airways, each Collector is obliged to collect tax at the time of clearance. Statements are to be filed on monthly basis.

Tax under this section is collected from all, except from the imports by Government or exempt entities on the basis of certificate issued by a Commissioner.

The sources said that Large Taxpayers Units (LTUs) and Regional Tax Offices (RTOs) have access to WeBOC – the online customs clearance system – for accessing the documents filed by importers for determination of withholding tax at import stage.

According to official documents for monitoring of withholding taxes, said that the authorized officer of each RTO should coordinate with Customs authorities, hold macro analysis of imports by Government, by other agencies, those treated exempt, and perform the system audit of imports, if required.

The exemptions allowed to the imports made by exempt entities, the cases where Commissioner issued exemption certificates or SRO based exemptions were allowed; need to be examined to ascertain their admissibility.

Categorization of imports, as provided in the online system should be strictly enforced by the Customs authorities. Concerned RTO should coordinate the matter accordingly.

A centralized web based system has been introduced for issuance of certificates by the Commissioners and creation of a centralized Database.

On-line verification of certificates by the concerned authorities will form part of it. This is necessary for ascertaining the genuineness of exemption certificates.
PRAL should send the data received from NBP/Customs House to each RTO on daily basis.

Tax collected as per Customs data and tax actually deposited in NBP and reported through CAP should be reconciled by PRAL on monthly basis with the RTO as part of normal exercise for reconciliation of revenue. Discrepancies should be reported to concerned Collector/ PRAL for reconciliation.

A comprehensive scheme of allotting tax numbers is in place. All importers should essentially have a Tax Registration Number that is either NTN or Free Tax Number (FTN) and no import should be allowed without a valid tax number.