FBR Imposes New Currency Declaration Requirement for Incoming Passengers

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The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has imposed a new restriction on the incoming international passengers to declare foreign currency of $10,000 or above at the time of arrival at the airports.

In this regard, the FBR has issued the draft of the new “Customs Declaration form“ for the incoming international passengers for declaration of foreign currency worth $10,000 or above.

The FBR issued an SRO.1751(I)/2022 here on Tuesday to amend the Baggage Rules, 2006.

According to the new customs declaration for passengers, in the case of accompanied baggage, the outbound passenger who owns foreign currency exceeding $5,000 or equivalent, any other prohibited or restricted item or any other item requiring declaration before Customs, shall file a declaration in the form before or on departure electronically in the WeBOC or manually at the airport.

Similarly, the incoming passenger who owns foreign currency exceeding $10,000 or equivalent, any other prohibited or restricted item or any other item requiring declaration before Customs, shall file a declaration in the form.

The declaration would ask the passengers to declare whether he/she is carrying any of the following goods: prohibited or restricted goods such as arms and ammunitions, narcotics, psychotropic substances or satellite phones, gold and precious metals, jewelry, precious or semi-precious stones, foreign currency in US Dollars (USD) or equivalent, for outbound passengers with an amount exceeding $5,000 or equivalent and incoming passengers having amount exceeding $10,000 or equivalent and any other items requiring declaration before Customs.

Earlier, the FBR had clarified that the mandatory requirement for passengers coming into Pakistan and bringing currency and/or negotiable instruments was notified by the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) more than ten years ago vide notification no. F.E.1/2012-SB dated 16th June 2012. This requirement came into force on 1st July 2012.

Subsequently, to widen the scope of declaration to include gold jewellery, precious stones and other prohibited/ restricted goods, Pakistan Customs also introduced a comprehensive “Customs Declaration Form for Passengers” which was notified vide SRO 689(I)/2019 dated 29th June 2019. These rules cover both incoming and outgoing passengers.

These requirements for declaration are in line with international standards and the best practices adopted by most of the countries in the world.

The passengers can make the declaration either manually at the Customs counter or electronically in the Customs system. To increase awareness amongst international passengers, Pakistan Customs has been collaborating with the Civil Aviation Authority, Airlines, and Immigration Authorities to improve its outreach to both departing and arriving passengers. As a result, compliance has been steadily increasing.

FBR has further reiterated that the currency declaration regime for all international passengers has been in the field for more than a decade, rather than being recently introduced on account of any recent FATF review requirements.

Source: Pro Pakistan

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