Govt Imports Luxury Cars Worth Millions in November

While the country is battling to save precious foreign exchange reserves and the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) is not issuing LCs (Letter of Credit) which is hampering the production of locally assembled vehicles as CKD kits are not being allowed to import, it has been revealed by senior Economist Ali Khizar, that the government has spent millions in the month of November to import luxury cars and high-end electric vehicles into the country.

Taking on Twitter, Khizer revealed that around 54 luxury vehicles including 8 Lexus and 46 Land Cruiser & Prado models were imported in November 2022, the assessed value of which is around $1.2 million (assuming $22k per vehicle). The prices of these expensive cars are under-declared and wrongly assessed which is a drain on both forex and taxes.

Khizer added that around 8 of these are brand new 2022 model Land Cruisers with an average assessed value of $46k and pre-tax price should be $60k. But this doesn’t end here as 17 luxury electric vehicles were also imported in the last 9 days of November.

Related: PAMA Concerned About New Import Mechanism Introduced by SBP

According to Khizar, 100% regulatory duty on EVs expired on 21st November, and 17 EVs were imported (custom declaration) in the last 9 days of the month. Most of these EVs are expensive Mercedes Benz EQE/EQS, BMW iX3 as well as Nissan Leaf. This cannot be a coincidence of importing the very next day of duty waiver, it must be pre-planned said Khizer.

Landed price (pre-tax) range of these electric vehicles is between $50k to $125k. Shockingly, some of these cars of over $100k have assessed value (& declared value) of below $10k. Khizer says that many more car imports in December 2022 are also expected. Rome is burning while kings and princes are busy buying EVs at under-declared value, he concluded.

Related: 2023- Dark Clouds will Remain Looming on the Auto Sector

Pakistan is suffering from depleting foreign reserves, and while imports related to the industrial and commercial sectors have been halted, this hefty spending by the govt itself raises a lot of questions. Let us see how the government will respond to these claims.

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