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Pakistan Customs have introduced Transportation of Coastal Goods Rules by virtue of addition of Chapter XXXVI in the Customs Rules, 2001.
The new Rules will regulate the transportation of goods in a coasting vessel from one port in Pakistan to another, barring such imported goods on which customs duty has not been paid, or goods classified as baggage or stores. The Rules will encompass FCL containerized cargo carried either in domesticated or imported containers, and LCL or bulk cargo. Sections 48, 60, 64, 65 and 66 of the Customs Act 1969, will apply to coastal goods and vessels in a manner akin to imported goods or goods meant for export.
The procedure for the transportation of coastal goods will comprise the following steps:
- the master of the coasting vessel or his authorized shipping agent will file an outward coastal general manifest specifying details of the goods;
- no vessel shall take on board any coastal goods until the outward coastal goods declaration relating to such goods has been passed by the designated customs officer;
- the coasting vessel will complete its voyage on the prescribed route, and will report to the unloading port within a specific time period; and
- on completion of the voyage, the master of the vessel or his authorized shipping agent will file inward coastal general manifest specifying all details of goods and crew loaded or boarded on the vessel; and
- standard procedure on goods clearance shall apply.
The transportation of coastal goods mechanism will extend the customs outreach to the marine traffic in coastal goods. This mechanism should, in due course, reduce congestion in overland transportation of goods.