‘Permit for live animal export given on bribe’

AFP

ISLAMABAD: The legislators in the Upper House of parliament on Wednesday claimed that the permit for export of live animals to Afghanistan and Iran was granted to a mafia who bribed for it.
A sub-committee has been formed to deal with the issue. The issue was raised during a meeting of the Senate Standing Committee on Commerce and Textile Industry. The meeting was chaired by Senator Haji Ghulam Ali. The committee was told that usually Assistant Commissioner, Deputy Commissioner and Political Agents were issued these live animal exports permit, which were used again and again. 
Senator Haji Saifullah Khan Bangash told the committee that political agents were usually appointed on bribe of Rs 250 million and then they collected money in such illegal ways. Every day there are tussles among the “blue-eyed exporters” of live animals, and some time people were killed during the disputes. He demanded the commerce minister take notice of such activities, which also responsible for higher prices of meat in domestic market. 
Senator Saeedul Hasan Mandokhail claimed that a mafia was involved in live animals export to Afghanistan and Iran. Senator Kalsoom Parveen asked the commerce minister to stop illegal export of live animals and allow only legal exports to neighboring countries. Federal Minister for Commerce Khurram Dastagir told the committee that they has to recommend the government/ministry to stop issuing permits for export of live animal exports. However, these businesses are related to Balochistan, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and FATA areas, which are considered as backward areas. If the government interference in this business, then there is a possibility that the people of those areas may make hue and cry, he added. The minister asked the committee to made strict recommendations in this regard to the government. 
Chairman Committee Haji Ghulam Ali decided to establish a sub-committee and deal the matter after proper consultation with stakeholders. Senator Abdul Haseeb Khan was of the view that there are great potential in live animal exports and stressed the need for exploring this sector. 
The committee was also informed that Pakistan is importing live animals only from Australia while it banned the import from other countries for the last 13 years due a disease. Now the government is considering import from other countries where the disease is disappeared. The committee also discussed in details the pending issues of Duty and Tax Remission for Exports (DTRE) and M/s Flying Kraft Paper Mill, Charsada, KP. Chairman of the committee Ghulam Ali said provinces of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan were totally neglected by the federal government for industrialization. 
Any industrialist, who wish to invest in these two provinces, the government machinery, including the FBR officials created a lot of hurdles for them. He informed the committee that machinery was imported in 1995 but after 20 years the custom officials could not clear the import despite the fact that high court and Supreme Court has gave decisions in favor of paper mills. The committee directed the custom officials to resolve the 20 yrs old dispute within one month time after completing all formalities. 
Through a question, the commerce minister informed the committee that increases in dollar value was just on speculation. Now, when the internal economy improves, the value of dollar started on declined. The minister claimed that now taxation improved, export on rise, internal growth begins, the position of inflow on rise, the Pakistani rupee gaining its value. He agreed that big fluctuation in Pakistani currency not in the interest of any business person. There are risk coverage in the world and a mechanism may be develop in Pakistan, if recommendation come from the committee, the minister concluded.

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