The amnesty scheme to legitimize smuggled vehicles through duties has in fact given a huge push to smuggling as total of 50,852 smuggled vehicles have been legalized in just one month. According to data, from March 5 to April 6, total 50,844 vehicles of more than 3 years old and total 8 vehicles of up to 3 years old have been legitimized by Federal Board of Revenue to earn Rs 16.03 billion.
Interestingly, more than 17,000 vehicles each from Quetta and Peshawar have been legitimized which shows that people there imported vehicles after the announcement of the amnesty scheme. 17,950 vehicles of more than 3 years old from Quetta while 17,330 vehicles of more than 3 years old from Peshawar have been legalized to collect Rs 10453.25 million in terms of duties/taxes.
In contrast, 1563 of more than 3 years old vehicles from Hyderabad, 2885 from Gwadar, 632 from Lahore, 1108 from Multan, 1154 from Sambrial, 1247 from Faisalabad, 1081 from Islamabad, and 5894 from Karachi have been legalized.
On the other hand, total seized vehicles cleared under amnesty scheme during the said period are 7324 including 4393 vehicles of up to 1800cc and 2931 vehicles of above 1800cc. This is another proof that more than 40 thousand vehicles have been imported after this scheme.
According to the break-up of these confiscated vehicles of both 1800cc power and above, 1854 vehicles from Quetta, 955 from Hyderabad, 883 from Peshawar, 830 from Islamabad, 766 from Karachi, 667 from Multan, 526 from Lahore, 460 from Gwadar, 237 from Sambrial, and 146 from Faisalabad were cleared under this scheme.
Manufacturers said that this whole amnesty thing has put the future prospects of local auto industry in jeopardy, as they cannot place effective long term policies fearing anti-industry schemes like this to harm their returns.
Sources in the aftermarket suggest that once these cars start landing in the market for resale the consumer who cannot differentiate will be made a fool easily as most of the cars will be sold with tempered mileages and snatched out gadgets. Since most of the cars have been rigorously used on off road tracks they are likely to give these customers a hard time.
The amnesty scheme is benefiting only few influential and tax evading citizens at the time when the country requires a level playing field where the ‘protected stakeholders’ are also taxed similar to a common man.