Import of Light Humanitarian Vehicles
Several international NGO's have experienced unacceptable delays importing vehicles into Pakistan, including vehicles redeployed from existing operations in Afghanistan.
At the request of the Logistics Cluster Chair, UNJLC clarified the general procedure for vehicle importation with the WFP Afghanistan Liaison Office. The procedure differs depending on whether the vehicles arrive by sea or air on the one hand or overland from Afghanistan, India or China on the other. In any event, all documentation should be clearly marked indicating that the imported items are for humanitarian relief work. The Government of Pakistan has granted Customs concessions for an initial period of three months although this does not seem to have been officially gazetted.
- Sea and Air: The consignee and carrier will require the usual import documents such as Bill of Lading, logbook, insurance and registration documents. To obtain Customs exemption, importing UN agencies should contact UNDP Islamabad for the issue of an Exemption Certificate for Customs Clearance. Contact is Mr. Niaz Ahmed, +92 (0)300 856-9472. UNDP will send the certificate to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for endorsement. This can take up to five working days. Upon receiving the endorsed certification, UNDP will issue a letter to accompany the certificate and the usual documents for the clearing agent.
It is understood that the procedure for NGO's is to write directly to the Ministry. Mr. Ahmed should be able to advise responding NGO's accordingly.
Clearance time at Karachi should be about two to three days. Road transport from Karachi to Islamabad should take about two to three days.
Land: The consignee will be required to obtain an export permit from the neighbouring country indicating no objection to the vehicle being exported. The consignee than takes the letter to the Ministry of Commerce with a covering letter. The Ministry should then, within ten days, provide a letter to be presented to the authorities at the land border allowing the importation.
The contact at the Ministry of Commerce is Mr. Tasneem Noorani, Secretary of the Ministry of Commerce, Room 413, 4th Floor, Pak Secretariat, Block "A", Islamabad, telephone 921-0277, fax 920-5241.
NGO's and IO's are invited to advise UNJLC at firstname.lastname@example.org of details of any issues encountered in importing vehicles by land, sea or air, particularly Customs exemption. It is understood that the Pakistani Government has granted exemptions on Customs duty for all humanitarian aid and equipment, including vehicles, associated with humanitarian aid, for an initial period of three months.