Customs gets tough on those smuggling banned items

The Customs Department said it has taken a firm decision to confiscate or re-export non-essential goods that have been temporarily suspended but have been caught smuggled into the country.

Earlier, the Customs took steps to release goods brought to the country by charging fines. But the Customs now says that it has taken a firm decision not to do so from now on.

If the goods that have been temporarily suspended had been paid for before being imported into Sri Lanka, a grace period was granted to act on it. Sri Lanka Customs has decided to take tough decisions since the grace period has ended.

Customs has decided to strictly enforce the law against anyone who abuses the opportunity given to foreign trade under the Open Accounts system by the Government of Sri Lanka to protect the official foreign reserve.

Sri Lanka Customs, whose primary task is to collect duties related to import and export trade, social protection, facilitating international trade and law enforcement, is already working

according to the laws and ordinances imposed by the government in accordance with those objectives. Customs is working to implement the recent decision by the Government and the

Central Bank of Sri Lanka to temporarily suspend a number of goods being imported from abroad and to carry out strategies to weaken foreign exchange transactions through the Undial and Hawala systems, in the same manner as before.

Import of goods prohibited under the Customs Ordinance will result in confiscation. Although the Inland Revenue Department collects taxes mainly to increase the government’s revenue,

some taxes are collected by the department and given to the government. The department also claims that Customs carries out tax collection and social security procedures within the limits covered by various ordinances including the, Import-Export Control Act, Foreign Exchange Act,

Animal and Plant Protection Act, Food Control Act, Sri Lanka Standards Institution Act, Antiquities Act, Intellectual Property Act, Disease Quarantine Act, National Drug Regulatory

Authority Act, Poisonous Opium and Dangerous Drugs Act, and the Telecommunications Regulatory Commission Act.


by Daily News Sri Lanka

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