Pakistan Customs prevented a plane from taking off from Benazir Bhutto International Airport (BBIA) on Saturday after the airline failed to submit a goods declaration (GD) file to custom officials.
After learning that the Airbus A320 — operated by a private Pakistani airline — was departing for Bulgaria without paying customs duty, Pakistan Customs officials stopped it from taking off and offloaded the passengers and crew.
The 12-member Bulgarian crew has been put up in a local hotel and would be allowed to fly only after an NoC and a GD file are provided by the company, a customs official said.
The same has been communicated to the airline’s head office, he added.
Submission of a GD file with Pakistan Customs is a must for any import or export taking place, he said. “The airline administration failed to provide a GD file. That is why the flight was stopped,” the official added.
Exporters or importers pay liabilities and taxes on the basis of these documents and the self-assessed value of the goods, he explained.
Airport Manager Ayaz Jadoon expressed ignorance about the issue. The airline’s spokesperson was not available for comment.
Published in The Express Tribune, June 1st, 2014.