Laxmi Capital News
'Tightening of reference pricing at customs terrifying industrialists'

The tighteningof customs valuation on the direction of Ministry of Finance Yuba Raj Khatiwadahas unleashed fear among industrialists of eastern Nepal.

Speaking at adiscussion organized jointly by Moran Merchants Association and Chamber ofIndustries Morang, local industrialists said that the customs valuationprocedure have les left them terrified.

Industrialistssay they do not know whether to import goods or wait for some time.Industrialists Shankar LalAgrawal said that the government was making effortsto increase price of sugar at a time when price of sugar is falling in theinternational market. “While sugar is available in the international market forUS$ 340 per ton, its price in the Nepali market hover above $460 per ton due tohigh customs duty,” Agrawal said, adding, “There is a demand for 250,000 tonsof sugar in the Nepali market. Local mills produce 125,000 tons and SaltTrading Corporation imports 50,000 tons by paying 1 percent duty. Remaining75,000 tons enter the market through illegal channel.”

IndustrialistKhem Chandra Jain also said price of goods, whose reference price is $3,700 atthe customs point, has fallen to $3,000. “In such a situation, we do not knowwhether to import goods or not,” Jain added.

Pawan KumarSarda, president of Morang Merchant Association, asked the government to endconfusion about reference price at the earliest. 

However,Shishir Kumar Dhungana, secretary of the Department of Customs, said thatproper pricing of goods and services is not a problem and that the governmentcan verify the invoice price with the taxed amount. “If the invoice disclosesthe original price, customs offices will impose taxes accordingly,” he said,adding that the government regulated the price of sugar by holding consultingwith sugarcane farmers.

Dhungana alsomade it clear that the government has not created hindrance in import ofindustrial raw materials. 

Speaking atthe program, Minister for Finance, Yuba Raj Khatiwada, said that the governmenthas taken the policy of prioritizing trade and industrial sector. “If anyoneasks for bribe or other favors at the customs point, I requestyou to report the matter straight to the finance ministry's toll-free number.The government will take needful action against them,” he said, requestingtraders and industrialists not to promote corruption and forgery of documents.


Source: My Republica, 27th March 2018

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