The import of used cars saw a sharp decline of 83%, in terms of value, during the first quarter (July-Sep FY20) of the current fiscal year. Following the strict measures introduced by the government to check growing forex deficit, imports have drastically dropped.
According to the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), import of used cars in completely built unit (CBU) condition went down to $14.69 million during July-September 2019/20 as compared with $87.21 million in the corresponding period last year
The commercial import of used or old cars is not allowed in the country under the law, however, the government allows overseas Pakistanis to bring cars into the country.
Pakistani nationals residing abroad, including dual nationals, can import old and used vehicles into Pakistan under personal baggage, gift and transfer of residence schemes. Cars not older than three years and other vehicles not older than five years can be imported under the schemes.
In February, the ministry of commerce amended Import Policy Order 2016 and made it mandatory for clearance of cars through foreign exchange, which should be certified by banks. Since then, the clearance of cars has stalled. Customs authorities state that a large number of imported cars are stuck at the port, but importers failed to make payments as per the procedure prescribed by the ministry of commerce.
In July-September, the import of heavy vehicles, including buses and trucks, declined 75% to $12.57 million from $50.15 million, while import of CBU motorcycles fell by 73% as compared with last year.
Overall, the import of vehicles in CKD dropped 27% to $261 million during the first quarter of 2019/20. The figure was recorded at $359 million in the corresponding period of the last fiscal year.
Further, the rates of locally-assembled cars for end consumers sharply increased during the period. These factors have reduced the productions of locally-manufactured cars and subsequently slashed the import of cars in CKD condition.
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