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Home » Industry News » Details
29 May 2012
NBR to introduce latest UNCTAD software to check under-invoicing

National Board of Revenue (NBR) will upgrade the latest version of United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) software by September next year, making its surveillance foolproof to check irregularities especially under-invoicing in external trade, NBR officials told BSS.

The tax regulator will also strengthen further its skills and capacity in dealing with various types of loopholes being used by some unscrupulous people to dodge duty and taxes, they said.

The comment came against the backdrop of strong criticism by a former central bank governor claiming that the country was incurring huge revenue losses due mainly to the failure of NBR in checking under-invoicing.

Bangladesh Bank (BB) former governor Dr Mohammad Farashuddin told a workshop in the central bank Sunday that a section of importers evading taxes through under-invoicing of their imported goods.

He also said that all the successes of the revenue board are fading out for "its failure in checking under-invoicing of imported goods".

Under invoicing is an illegal practice for dodging proper duty of imported products by hedging their actual market prices.

"We have already taken many steps like automation, skill development, constant surveillance and capacity building of the revenue board to run it efficiently and effectively," NBR Member for Export and Bond Md Nasir Uddin said.

He said under this continuous process of strengthening of NBR, the UNCTAD software to prevent fraudulent activities in external trade would be upgraded to the latest version next year.

The revenue board is currently using the previous version of UNCTAD Automated System for Customs Data (ASYCUDA), which is known as ASYCUDA++. This version will be upgraded to ASYCUDA World, the latest version of the customs management system for international trade and transport operations.

This advanced application is designed and developed for customs administrations and the trade community to comply with international standards when fulfilling import, export and transit related procedures. The latest programme will help fight corruption by enhancing transparency of transactions in foreign trade, facilitating trade efficiency and competitiveness by substantially reducing transaction time and costs and improving security by streamlining procedures of cargo control, transit of goods and clearance of goods.

The NBR member said the system would have the latest information about market prices of goods so custom officials can get the necessary information instantly to determine the actual price of imported items.

For instance, he said if anyone imports lentils from Egypt and declared a dubious price, custom officials can instantly check the real market price by using the UNCTAD programme and take proper steps against the importer in case of under-invoicing.

He said to check under-invoicing, custom officials are now revaluating import duty if they find declared price of any import item is doubtful.

Customs Houses Officials said in most cases under-invoicing involves import of high tariff items and consumers goods. Industrial raw materials are seldom imported by declaring fictitious prices to evade duty.


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