The Customs have decided to enhance post-clearance audit (PCA) and reconcile imported and released goods as a strategy for achieving the revenue target for this fiscal.
Officials said these two are part of a 14-point instruction meant for ramping up drives for attaining the national target of revenues for the fiscal year 2017-18.
In the fiscal 2017-18 budget of over Tk 4.0 trillion, the government has set a target for the Customs to collect Tk 734.36 billion out of aggregate tax-revenue collection worth Tk 2.48 trillion.
The Customs policy wing rolled out the action plan for the 17 customs offices across the country in a recent meeting held at the National Board of Revenue (NBR) headquarters.
The major instructions include enhancing the quality of risk management, valuation and declaration management, augmenting auction and Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) for out-of-court resolution of disputes
"The wing also directed squeezing tax-exemption culture, expediting the process of resolving the pending cases and simplifying the tax-collection process," said one customs official.
According to the Trade Facilitation Implementation Guide (TFIG), PCA or audit-based controls are defined by the Revised Kyoto Convention as measures by which the Customs satisfy themselves as to the accuracy and authenticity of declarations through the examination of the relevant books, records, business systems and commercial data held by persons concerned.
The meeting was arranged for a stocktaking of the revenue-collection performance of the VAT and customs offices across the country in the past FY 2016-17.
The Customs wing of the NBR missed its revised target by Tk 7.70 billion in FY 2016-17. The revised target for the Customs was Tk 550 billion for the last fiscal.
Meanwhile, the NBR has found some unavoidable negative factors for the failure to achieve the expected growth in revenue collection, while some commissionerates have missed the opportunity to get to their goals.
In the review meeting, the NBR found the highest revenue collected by Chittagong customs house in FY 17. The CCH at the largest seaport of the country collected Tk 367.09 billion, surpassing its target.
Customs at the country's largest land-port Benapole collected Tk 38.14 billion followed by the customs house in Dhaka Tk 31.54 billion, Mongla Tk 30.33 billion and the inland container depot at Kamalapur Tk 19.43 billion.
There are some 12 VAT commissionerates across the country, seven of which achieved above 18 per cent growth.
Of the dozen VAT commissionerates, LTU has collected the highest amount of revenue worth Tk 369.83 billion and boasted the highest growth of 21 per cent.
The customs, excise and VAT commissionerate, Chittagong, collected the second-highest amount of revenue at Tk 71.75 billion followed by Dhaka north Tk 61.88 billion and Dhaka south Tk 47.18 billion.
Officials said all of the VAT officials were busy and occupied with preparing themselves and motivate businesses on the new VAT and Supplementary Duty Act 2012, which was scheduled to be implemented from July 1, 2017 but was eventually shelved.
A number of training programmes and motivational campaigns took place last year to make people aware about the new VAT law that the government later deferred for two years following recommendations put forward by businesses.
"Many of the VAT commissionerates could not fully concentrate on revenue collection and recovery of the dues," said an NBR official.
Despite all this, the VAT wing archived 19.28 per cent growth collecting Tk 668.91 billion in taxes in FY 17 and surpassed the revised target.
Last year's was the highest growth achieved in revenue collection over the years as it was 12.10 per cent and 14.42 per cent in FY 2014-15 and 2015-16 respectively.