KARACHI: The Import permission from Ministry of Commerce is necessary for the import of liquor for a diplomatic bonded warehouse.
“A Muslim cannot import or deal in liquor in the diplomatic bonded warehouse,” according to explanation issued by Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) regarding Diplomatic Bonded Warehouse.
“Liquor is allowed to Diplomats against the Exemption Certificates issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.”
Liquor can be purchased by diplomats according to the quantities mentioned in the exemption certificates issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, it said.
Privileged persons can purchase liquor according to the quota provided in the Model Rules and CGO.15/96 which is as under :-
According to CGO.15/96, the Import / purchase of alcoholic beverage is restricted to US$ 200/= per family per month by expatriate employees of foreign or local companies, loan funded projects or media personnel.
According to the Model Rules dated 15-04-1963 for customs concessions to privileged personnel arriving under various foreign aid programmes or projects, Import / purchase of liquor can be made as per following quota.
The FBR said that Diplomatic Bonded Warehouse is the warehouse licensed under section 13 of the Customs Act, 1969 for warehousing the dutiable goods Imported exclusively for diplomats / privileged persons.
A Bonded Warehouse License is issued under the provisions of section 13 of Customs Act,1969.
However, in case of Diplomatic Bonded Warehouse, the licenses were issued with the prior approval of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).
As provided under sub-section(2) of section 13 of the Customs Act,1969, an application for the grant of license shall be made in the prescribed form Annex-B along with following documents :-
Map of the proposed area.
Article and Memorandum of Association in case of company and copy of partnership deed in case of partnership firm.
Certificate from a scheduled bank showing soundness of financial position.
Income Tax Registration Certificate.
Details of Directors and authorized persons.
Certificate of Membership of Chamber of Commerce and Industry.
Lease / Tenancy Agreement.
Copies of National identity Card(s) & Character Certificate(s).
Comprehensive Insurance Policy from an approved Insurance Company.
Survey Certificate issued by the approved surveyor.
Besides the requirements mentioned above, all other conditions required under the Customs Act,1969 or any other law for the time being in force shall also be fulfilled.
The permission for Import of liquor is, however, granted to non-Muslims only.
The diplomatic bonded warehouses are dealing in Import of goods Imported exclusively for the use of diplomats, foreign missions and privileged persons. As such, all such goods / items which are used by the diplomats, foreign missions and privileged persons can be imported.
The goods are not imported against L/C. The Importer (holding diplomatic bonded warehouse license) Import goods on contract basis and store the same in his warehouse. Subsequently goods are sold to diplomats / privileged persons according to their requirement and exemption certificates issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The purchase will be made strictly according to the quota fixed by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and quantities mentioned in the exemption certificate.
Quota is allotted and purchases are authorized by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The strength of the diplomatic community in the country which benefits from the warehouses is maintained by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The licensee of a bonded warehouse cannot open its sub-office in other cities. Periodical stock taking is conducted.
The audit is also carried out by the staff of the Director General, Revenue Receipt Audit on quarterly basis.
Moreover, insurance policy is obtained from the bonders covering all risks including pilferage etc.
Besides there are specific provisions in Chapter-XI and Chapter-XVIII of the Customs Act,1969.
In case of detection of any pilferage or misuse of the facility, penal action under the relevant clauses of sub-section (1) of section 156 of the Customs Act,1969 can also be initiated.
On first arrival in Pakistan a privileged person shall be allowed to import free of duty and taxes foodstuff and other consumable stores including liquors and tobacco up to C&F value of US$ 200/- under chapter III of SRO 450(i)/01.
During the period of his assignment he shall be allowed to Import free of duty and taxes foodstuff and consumable stores including liquor and tobacco up to C&F value of US$ 150/- per month but the value of liquor will not exceed US $50/- per month.