Published in 23 December, 2020 18:48
The government gave fuel smugglers a week’s ultimatum to end the practice
ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) – Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed Wednesday gave gasoline smugglers one week’s notice to end the practice and warned of strict punitive measures against anyone found involved in trafficking that ravages the national economy.
The Interior Minister described it as an “important political decision” and said he had been tasked by Prime Minister Imran Khan to ensure that sales of contraband gasoline across the country would end soon.
He spoke to the media after attending a meeting chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan to discuss anti-smuggling measures, and was specifically focused on oil smuggling. The meeting was attended by the Minister of Home Affairs, Finance, Maritime Affairs, Trade Advisors, Chair of FBR and senior officials.
He said the prime minister appreciated the role of the Federal Revenue Council – FBR in previously curbing smuggling of cell phones into the country and saving two billion dollars in revenue, as well as billions by handing checks on smuggled clothes. He said this not only led to income growth, but also boosted the domestic textile industry, despite the COVID-19 pandemic.
He said a media campaign would also be launched to create awareness among the masses and to encourage them to report the sale, smuggling and use of gasoline brought into the country illegally.
He said that within seven days all gas stations involved in this practice would face strict punitive measures and their licenses would be revoked and they would no longer be allowed to operate gas stations.
Sheikh Rashid is optimistic that this measure alone will save the government about two billion dollars. He said the FBR had been tasked by the Prime Minister to withhold the smuggling of US $ 7 billion which eroded national wealth.