The National Board of Revenue has reduced the minimum import value, based on which the revenue board determines customs duties and taxes, for ceramic tiles and toothpaste following importers’ demand.
Customs wing of the revenue board on Wednesday issued a statutory regulatory order, reducing the value by up to $1 a square metre on import of ceramic tiles of different sizes.
According to the SRO signed by NBR chairman Abu Hena Md Rahmatul Muneem, the new minimum import value will range from $5.25 a square metre to $11 a square metre of the products.
Previously, the highest minimum value was $12 a square metre for large-sized ceramic tiles and the lowest value was $6 a square metre for small-sized ceramic tiles.
The NBR also set afresh the minimum value at $11 a square metre for the ceramic tiles of the other sizes.
The revenue board also reduced the minimum import value of toothpaste to $3.50 a kilogram from $5 a kg.
Customs department of the NBR also set the minimum import value at $1.30 a kg of tasting salt to prevent under-invoicing of the product.
Customs officials said that they rescheduled the minimum import value for the products in line with recommendations made by a NBR committee.
They said that the importers of ceramic tiles and toothpaste had demanded reducing the value as previously the value was determined based on value higher than the actual import value.
The reduction in the minimum import value of ceramic tiles and toothpaste would reduce the prices of the products on the domestic market, they said.
In the case of tasting salt, the NBR set the minimum import value following recommendations made by the Chattogram Customs House to prevent misdeclaration regarding the import price of the product. Now, the minimum import value is applicable to several hundreds of products.
The NBR set the value for the purpose of customs valuation as there are allegations that importers hide the actual import value and declare lower value to evade duties and taxes.
Customs duties and other taxes at the import stage are calculated based on the minimum value irrespective of the actual transaction value of the products.
Experts and traders always oppose imposition of the minimum value on import of any product, arguing that the practice is the violation of the rules of the World Customs Organisation. Customs valuation should be based on transaction value of a product, they said.
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