LAHORE: Imran Mohmand, General Manager of Customs Automation, has urged member factories of All Pakistan Textile Mills Association (APTMA) to activate Export Facilitation Program (EFS) modules and suggest modifications for the improve further.

He was addressing representatives of APTMA member factories during a training workshop on the EFS indirect export module and other aspects related to the system at the APTMA office in Lahore.

Tahir Abbas, Additional Director Reforms & Automation, accompanied by his technical team, also accompanied him on this occasion.

APTMA Senior Vice President Kamran Arshad, Vice President Asad Shafi and APTMA North Zone General Secretary welcomed the guests.

The DG said the aim of the workshop is to educate exporters on the key features of the modules.

He said indirect exports are a major component of the EFS and a mechanism for transferring raw materials and semi-finished and fully finished products, including local sales, has been rolled out under the scheme.

He said that the Federal Revenue Board (FBR) has developed the pending modules of the EFS, especially the indirect export module, the transfer of inputs and intermediate goods. These modules have been deployed or are currently being tested, he added.

Responding to a question, he said that a separate module for zero-rated local purchases would be introduced within the given time frame.

He requested APTMA member factories to submit all suggestions for improving the modules to the APTMA General Secretary. In the meantime, he urged APTMA members to start using the modules and pass on any constructive suggestions to the department for further changes. It will be followed by another interactive session in early December, he added.

Regarding e-commerce via B2C sales via courier services, he said that a module already existed in the WeBoc and changes were being integrated to process export refund requests. However, no provision for retroactive sales is yet available in the system and member mills will need to contact their collectors for all such sales.

He further clarified that there is no provision available in the EFS regarding the integration of the EFS with sales tax filings. However, he secured his treatment by the concerned team to improve the EFS.

Regarding the linking of the EFS with the income tax and sales tax systems, he said that APTMA members should discuss this with relevant departments while keeping the automation department aware.

Tahir Abbas, Additional Director of Reforms and Automation, Karachi, said the aim of automating business practices is to ensure ease and reduce the cost of doing business. He said that all export-related schemes have been unified in the form of the EFS.

According to him, import and export licensing has been automated and some 7,000 declarations have been processed so far.

A technical team from Pakistan Customs Karachi conducted software demonstrations to inform participants about the transfer mechanism on the occasion.

APTMA Senior Vice President Kamran Arshad appreciated the patience of the FBR team in answering their questions.

He expressed the hope that bilateral cooperation would also continue in the future so that the system would be error-free and user-friendly, in line with the requirements of textile exporters.

In the end, Asad Shafi, Vice President, expressed his thanks to the RBF team for informing APTMA member factories about the program.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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