Import Policy Order, 2012-15

Ministry of Commerce

Trade Policy


Import Policy Order defines the legal regimes for the import of goods into Pakistan, ranging from free imports to regulated imports to the prohibited ones. It consolidates all import trade controls into a single instrument, as enforced under various international conventions and national legislation. The importability status of goods is defined under a specific regime, each corresponding to an Appendix of the Import Policy Order.


S.R.O. 193 (I)/2013. –In exercise of the powers conferred by sub-section (1) of section 3 of the Imports and Exports (Control) Act, 1950, (XXXIX of 1950), the Federal Government is pleased to make the following Order, namely: -

1. Short title and commencement. – (1) This Order may be called the Import Policy Order, 2013.

(2) It shall come into force at once.

2. Definitions. - In this Order, unless the context requires otherwise, -

(a) “Act” means the Imports and Exports (Control) Act, 1950 (XXXIX of 1950);

(b) “Annex” means an Annex to this Order;

(c) “Appendix” means an Appendix to this Order;

(d) “banned item” means a commodity import of which is prohibited under this Order;

(e) “Industrial user” means an industrial establishment, which makes imports for its own industrial use;

(f) “Job lot” is an assortment of miscellaneous goods for sale as one lot. Normally these goods are of inferior quality;

(g) “Stock lot” are the goods, which remain in stock because of change in taste, market conditions or deterioration of quality and are presented as one lot

(h) “Place of origin” or “origin” means the country of supply where goods are produced or manufactured;

(i) “Restricted item” means a product import of which is subject to conditions specified in this Order;

(j) “Samples” means goods in limited quantity clearly identified as such and of no commercial value;

(k) “Tariff area” means any area in Pakistan outside the limits of an Export Processing Zone; and

(l) “New vehicles” means vehicles manufactured during twelve months preceding the date of importation and not registered or used prior to importation.

3. Basis of imports. - (1) Imports may be made against all modes of payment subject to procedures prescribed by the State Bank of Pakistan.

(2) Private sector importers may enter into Commodity Exchange Arrangements with suppliers abroad subject to the procedure notified by the State Bank of Pakistan.

(3) For imports under loans, credits or bilateral assistance requiring contracts to be approved by Economic Affairs Division or some other agency of the Government of Pakistan, Letters of Credit shall have to be opened within sixty days of registration of contract with a bank designated by the State Bank of Pakistan.

(4) Public sector agencies shall open Letters of Credit through a bank designated by the State Bank of Pakistan.

4. Import of Goods. - Import of all goods is allowed from worldwide sources unless otherwise elsewhere specified to be banned, prohibited or restricted in this Order:

Provided that the amendments brought in this Order from time to time shall not be applicable to such imports where Bill of Lading (B/L) or Letters of Credit (L/C) were issued or established prior to the issuance of amending Order.

5. Prohibitions and restrictions.-

(A). Prohibitions: (i) Goods specified in Appendix ‘A’ are banned for import. This ban however shall not be applicable on -

(a) Import of goods by the Federal Government for defence purposes;

(b) Any goods which are exempt from customs duties on importation by the Foreign Diplomatic Missions in Pakistan under the Diplomatic and Consular Privileges Act, 1972 (IX of 1972); and

(c) Ministries, Divisions, Provincial Governments and their departments and other Government agencies may import items, irrespective of their import status to meet their requirements, subject to the condition that order in respect of which are placed directly by the administrative Secretaries of respective Divisions, Departments or officers authorized by the administrative secretaries, provided they meet their requirements of foreign exchange from their own foreign exchange budget allocation.

(ii) Goods of Israeli origin or imported from Israel.

(iii) Live animals i.e. cattle, buffalo, sheep and goats, meat and bone meal, tallow containing protein and feed ingredients animal origin from BSE infected countries, such as U.K, Ireland, Belgium, Denmark, Falkland, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg, Holland, Spain, Brazil, Czech. Republic, Austria, Poland, Slovakia, Slovenia, USA and Alberta Region of Canada, provided import of meat and meat products from other parts of Canada shall however be allowed subject to certifying additional animal quarantine requirements. This ban shall however not apply on the import of feed ingredients, namely-milk enhancers, concentrates, growth promoters, enzymes, fish meal replacers, transmuted into premixes and growth promoters, feather meal and poultry meal which have originated from vegetable, poultry, mineral and sea sources from the aforesaid BSE infected countries:

Provided that import of pets (cats, dogs, fancy birds, etc.) shall be allowed subject to the condition that the concerned National Veterinary Authority of the above specified exporting countries shall certify the BSE status of the country and the feeding of pets with meat, bone meal and greaves derived from BSE infected ruminants has been banned and effectively enforced.

(iv) Poultry and poultry products and other captive live birds (pet, game, wild, exotic and fancy birds) from Vietnam, South Korea, Thailand, Japan, Indonesia, Myanmar, Cambodia, Laos, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Malaysia, South Africa, Russia, Kazakhstan, Mongolia, Turkey, Greece, Romania, Croatia, Iran, Italy Azerbaijan, Ukraine, Iraq, Bulgaria, Slovenia, France, Nigeria, Slovakia, Austria, Bosnia, Herzegovina, Germany, Afghanistan, Scotland-United Kingdom and China on account of Avian Influenza H5N1 strain, shall not be allowed till further orders. This ban shall however not apply to egg powder from China and to the import of cooked poultry products from South Africa and Malaysia, after certification from designated laboratories at Hong Kong to the effect that these are free from Avian Influenza H5N1 strain:

Provided that this ban shall also not apply to the import of day-old grand parent stock chicks, day-old parent stock or breeders chicks of layers and broilers and hatching eggs from France, Germany, Iran and United Kingdom subject to certification from the veterinary authorities of the exporting country that these chicks and hatching eggs have not originated from the Avian Influenza infected zones or areas:

Provided further that this ban shall also not apply to the import of fancy, captive and game or hobby birds from South Africa subject to certification from their competent veterinary authority that these birds have originated from avian influenza free zones or areas:

Provided also that this ban shall not apply to the import of processed or cooked poultry products from China, subject to the certification from the competent authority in China to the effect that-

(a) poultry commodity or products have been processed at not less than 70 C (Degree Celsius) for reasonable time length throughout manufacturing or cooking of the product to ensure the destruction of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza (HPAI)(H5NI) virus; and

(b) raw material for said processed poultry commodity or product has originated from Avian Influenza free zone or area or compartment and processed or cooked in an approved establishment registered with competent authority of exporting country.

(v) Counterfeit products.

(vi) Import of all rough diamonds from, ‘Cote’d Ivoire’.

(vii) Goods specified in Appendix-C are banned for import in secondhand or used condition except those specifically exempted therein.

(B). Restrictions. – (i) Goods specified in Appendix-‘B’ shall be importable subject to the conditions laid down therein.

(ii) Import of goods shall be subject to the same national quality standards or regulations as are prescribed in respect of similar and domestically produced goods. List of such standards and regulations notified by the PSQCA are specified vide Appendix-N.

(iii) Import of goods from India or of Indian origin specified in Appendix-G shall not be importable. The goods other than those mentioned in the said Appendix shall be importable from India subject to same conditions and requirements as prescribed under this Order wherever applicable.

(iv) In case of goods imported in to Pakistan from Kenya, a fee at the rate of fifty dollars (US) per document or 0.5% of the invoice value of goods, whichever is higher, shall be charged by Pakistani High Commission, Nairobi, Kenya for attestation of the Certificate of the Origin and invoice related to such goods.

(v) Imports under Border Trade Agreements and Pakistan-Afghanistan Trade Agreement shall be made in accordance with procedure notified by the Federal Government from time to time.

(vi) Import and export of goods for transit under the Agreement for Traffic in Transit among the Governments of Peoples Republic of China, The Kyrgyz Republic, The Republic of Kazakhstan and the Islamic Republic of Pakistan shall be subject to all prohibitions and restrictions notified anywhere in this Order.

6. Prohibitions and restrictions imposed under other Laws.- Notwithstanding anything contained in this Order, the prohibitions, restrictions, conditions and requirements as prescribed under any other law, Act or rules, for the time being in force, shall be applicable, mutatis mutandis, on specified imports.

7. Classification of goods.- For proper classification of goods in terms of Harmonized Commodity Description and Coding System (H.S.Code), the First Schedule to the Customs Act, 1969 (IV of 1969) i.e. Pakistan Customs Tariff (PCT) shall be referred to and shall have effect accordingly.

8. Dispute about import status.- (1) Any dispute or clarification regarding import status of any item which cannot be resolved by the Customs Authorities shall be referred to Ministry of Commerce for final decision.

(2) Import status as applicable to the items of Chapters 1 to 97 of the Pakistan Customs Tariff, mentioned in this Order shall mutatis mutandis apply to Chapter 99 of the said Tariff.

(3) In case of any dispute or clarification regarding import status of any item due to transposition of H.S 2007 version to H.S 2012 version, reference shall be made to the Ministry of Commerce for necessary correction in this Order.

9. Import of used plant, machinery and equipment.- (i) Project relocation scheme. - (1) Plant, machinery and equipment in new or used or refurbished condition is allowed for relocation of complete projects in all industrial sectors except for industries specified at Serial No. 33 of Appendix-A and Serial No. 57, Part-I of Appendix-B.

(2). Spare parts on the regular inventory list of projects being relocated is also permissible for import, whether new, old, used or secondhand.

(3) Relocation of project machinery and equipment shall be subject to fitness certificate by any of the pre-shipment inspection companies listed at Appendix-H to the effect that the machinery and equipment are in good working condition and the remaining life is not less than ten years.

(ii). Import of Secondhand Plant, Machinery and Equipment and Specialized Machinery by Construction, Mining and Petroleum Sector. -

(1) Construction companies, duly registered with Pakistan Engineering Council, mining, oil and gas and petroleum sector companies are allowed to import second hand plant, machinery and equipment actually required for their projects in Pakistan subject to prior shipment certification by any one of the prescribed pre-shipment inspection companies listed at Appendix-H to the effect that the plant, machinery and equipment are in good working condition and they are not older than ten years.

(2) Oil, Gas and Petroleum sector companies are also allowed import of used drilling rigs, not older than twenty years subject to pre-shipment inspection by one of the companies listed in Appendix–H certifying that the said rigs are in good working condition and have a minimum remaining productive life of ten years.

(3) Construction, mining and petroleum sector companies are also allowed to import second- hand or reconditioned parts of the plant, machinery and equipment as clause (1).

(4) Second-hand or used passenger transport vehicles, including buses (PCT heading Nos. 87.02 and 87.03), trucks (PCT heading No. 87.04) and static road rollers of 10-12 tons capacity, 55 HP (PCT heading No. 8429.4000) shall not be allowed.

(5) Construction companies, mining, oil, gas and petroleum sector companies are also allowed to import specialized vehicle-mounted machinery and transport equipment such as mobile transit mixture, concrete pumps, crane lorries, concrete placing trucks, dumpers designed for off highway use, cement bulkers and prime movers 380 HP and above, etc. specified in Appendix-I. However, import of such items will be subject to certification by the competent authority of exporting country or a recognized pre-shipment inspection company listed in Appendix-H to the effect that the said machinery or transport equipment (a) is compliant with Euro-II emission standards (b) is in good working condition and has a remaining productive life of five years.

(6) Commercial importers may also be allowed to import plant, machinery and equipment, excluding specialized vehicle-mounted machinery or transport equipment, on behalf of construction companies duly registered with Pakistan Engineering Council, mining, gas and petroleum sector companies. The imports will however, be subject to conditions mentioned clause (1).

(iii). Import of construction machinery used abroad by the Pakistani companies. - Import of used and second hand construction machinery, including prime movers (HS heading No. 87.01) but excluding tractors (HS heading No. 87.01), trailers (HS heading No. 87.16), passenger vehicles and luxury or saloon cars (HS headings No. 87.02 and 87.03) and other vehicles for the transport of goods (HS headings 87.04), shall be allowed on completion of overseas projects by Pakistani companies, provided that such machinery has been actually purchased from the foreign exchange earnings of the concerned Pakistani companies and the machinery and equipment is used on the projects abroad and profit earned from the said projects is repatriated to Pakistan through official channels. A certificate from Pakistan’s Mission in the country of project confirming the actual use of such machinery on the project shall be submitted to the customs authorities at the time of import.

10. Clearance of importable goods sent by overseas Pakistanis without involvement of foreign exchange. - The consignees of goods in Pakistan shall be allowed by the concerned collectors of customs to get clearance of the goods sent by overseas Pakistanis without the condition of sales tax registration subject to the production of an earning certificate from the designated officer of Pakistan’s Foreign Mission concerned.

11. Import of inputs by manufacturers cum exporters. - The export houses, manufacturing bonds and exporters operating under Manufacturing in Bonds, Common Bonded Warehouses, Duty and Tax Remission for Exports (DTRE) of the Customs Rules, 2001, and temporary importation scheme governed through Notification No. S.R.O. 492(I)/2009, dated the 13th June, 2009 shall be allowed to import items actually required for production of export items, except items mentioned in Appendix-A, B and C. However, units registered under DTRE scheme shall be eligible to import input items listed in Appendix-B subject to fulfillment of the conditions mentioned therein.

12. Temporary Import. - Temporary import-cum-export of goods in respect of the following shall be allowed by the respective Collectors of Customs against submission of indemnity bond or bank guarantee to the satisfaction of custom authorities to ensure re- export of the same within the specified period, namely:-

(a) construction companies or firms or oil and gas companies, oil exploration and production companies, mining companies, their authorized or approved contractors, sub-contractors and service companies, and refineries shall be allowed to import all plant, machinery and equipment including specialized machinery whether new or used except secondhand or used passenger vehicles, trucks, buses and static road rollers of 10-12 tons capacity, 55HP. Certification of the Chief Executive of a company of the respective sector-endorsing requirement of the contractor, sub-contractor or service companies shall be required:

Provided that permanent retention of all permissible categories of machinery or equipment imported on temporary basis by construction companies shall be allowed by the Federal Board of Revenue subject to payment of all duties and taxes to be assessed by the Customs under relevant laws;

(b) airlines and shipping lines shall be allowed to import items on import cum export basis except those mentioned in Appendix-A, B and C, unless specifically allowed under this Order;

(c) any goods manifested for a country outside Pakistan, which are bonded in Pakistan for re-export to that country;

(d) any good imported and bonded for re-export as ship stores to a country outside Pakistan without requirement of furnishing indemnity bond or bank guarantee;

(e) exhibition materials for fairs and exhibitions officially organized by the Government or Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry or Chambers of Commerce and Industry will be allowed to import items except mentioned in Appendix- A, B and C except where specifically allowed under this Order. However, giveaways, sale on payment of leviable duties, donations and wastages etc., shall be allowed:

Provided that Pakistan based Associations and individual companies shall also be allowed to import exhibition materials for fairs and exhibitions except those mentioned in Appendix-A, B and C subject to endorsement by Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP);

(f) any goods except those specified in Appendix A, B and C for demonstration, display, test or trial purpose for a limited period;

(g) second-hand tools and professional equipment imported by scientists, information technology experts, doctors, technicians, engineers etc., either imported in their own name or in the name of the company in Pakistan for which these are imported;

(h) excavation equipment and materials imported by foreign archeological missions;

(i) scientific and educational equipment imported for scientific educational, or cultural seminars in Pakistan on the recommendation of the concerned Ministry;

(j) equipment and materials imported by Pakistani as well as foreign nationals such as journalists, press photographers, members of television teams, broadcasting units, film companies, theater and circus companies, for their professional requirement, subject to endorsement on their passports;

(k) shipping containers for transportation of cargo;

(l) trucks and cargo transport vehicles registered in foreign countries carrying imported cargo through border customs stations, provided that there is a bilateral or multilateral agreement on reciprocity basis between Pakistan and the foreign country to which those vehicles belong;

(m) import of engineering goods, carpets, sports goods, surgical instruments etc., into Pakistan shall be allowed to the existing industry for the purpose of repairing in Pakistan and subsequent re-export, subject to submission of indemnity bond or bank guarantee to the customs authorities to ensure re-export of the same within the specified period;

(n) Pakistani exporters are allowed to re-import exported goods for the purpose of removing defects by way of repairing during the warranty period provided in the sales contracts against submission of indemnity bond to the satisfaction of the concerned Collector of Customs;

(o) import of goods including means of transport, excluding those mentioned in Appendix- A, B and C, shall be allowed under ATA Carnet (Istanbul Convention 1990) upon furnishing of temporary admission papers (Carnet etc) as due security.

(p) import of goods (including means of transport) excluding those mentioned in Appendix- A, B and C, shall be allowed under TIR Convention subject to fulfillment of all prescribed conditions; and

(q) mountaineering expeditions shall be allowed to import their equipment and materials on import-cum-export basis. In case, the equipment and material are not re-exported, they may donate such equipment and material to local mountaineering clubs and produce a certificate to the Customs from a mountaineering club to the effect that the equipment and material imported on import-cum-export basis has been donated to that club.

13. Imports into export processing zones. - The units operating in export processing zones may import goods from abroad as well as from the tariff area in accordance with the rules and procedures prescribed under the Customs Export Processing Zone Rules, 1981.

14. Gwadar special economic zone.- Admission of goods into Gwadar Special Economic Zone from abroad and from the tariff area shall be allowed in accordance with the rules and procedures to be notified by the Federal Government.

15. Import of vehicles under personal baggage, transfer of residence and gift schemes. - Import of vehicles as defined in the relevant rules is allowed as per the procedure specified in Appendix ‘E’.

16. Import of car by disabled persons: Disabled persons, subject to import authorization by Ministry of Commerce to be issued on the specific recommendation of respective Federal or Provincial Health Departments, shall be allowed duty free import of a car of engine capacity not exceeding 1350cc. The car so imported shall have to be customized to overcome the physical disability and shall be for personal use only.

17. Change of consignee. - Customs authorities may allow change of consignee in respect of frustrated cargo, if the goods are otherwise importable in terms of this Order.

18. Compliance.- Banks and Customs shall ensure that all requirements, conditions and restrictions etc., as set out in this Order are duly complied with.

19. Contravention of the Act. - Any imports that do not comply with the requirements of this Order, or are made on the basis of any false or incorrect particulars, shall be deemed to have been made in contravention of the Act:

Provided that the Federal Government may condone such contravention upon payment of surcharge or on such conditions as it may prescribe;

Provided further that all goods of banned list imported in commercial quantity shall not be released in any circumstances. Such goods shall be re-exported at importers or shipping lines costs:

Provided also that goods on restricted list which are of sub-standard quality affecting public health including short shelf life medicines or pharmaceutical raw materials or edible products imported in contravention of this Order shall be destroyed within a period of six months without offering any release.

20. Relaxation of prohibitions and restrictions.- (1) The Federal Government may, for reasons to be recorded, allow import in relaxation of any prohibition or restriction under this Order.

(2) The Federal Government may relax the requirement of re-export on goods imported on temporary basis on such conditions as it may deem fit.

(3) The Federal Government may issue import authorization in respect of any item for which relaxation is made under sub-paragraph (1) or for which import authorization is required under this Order.

(4) The Federal Government shall issue the aforesaid condonation or authorization on its letter- head, consecutively numbered and duly embossed.

21. Suspension or ban of import – The Federal Government may, where it deems it to be in public interest, suspend for a specified period or ban the import of any goods from all or any source.

22. Repeal.- The Import Policy Order, 2009, is hereby repealed.

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