The National Board of Revenue (NBR) has brought diplomatic bonded warehouse (DBW) facility under automated system in a bid to ensure speedy services to the diplomats and check abuse of the duty-free import.
People having DBW have to follow the new rules to avail duty-free facility on import of products from October 1, 2021.
The NBR's Customs Wing issued a circular, on Monday, to simplify activities of DBW with a software, developed by the diplomatic bond automation system.
The circular contains specific guidelines and orders to operate DBW that has been issued under the Customs Act 1969 (Act no IV of 1969) - sections 13 (2), 119A and 219B.
It has defined activities of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA), NBR, Customs Bond Commissio-nerate (CBC), DBW and ICT Wing of NBR to operate the new system and allow the duty-free import.
Currently, diplomats enjoy DBW facility by obtaining a tax exemption certificate - issued by the MoFA, and a passbook issued by the CBC.
Diplomats and privileged persons are allowed to purchase liquor or liquor-like imported products and cigarettes under DBW without paying duty and tax as well as at nominal prices under the Vienna Convention of Diplomatic Relations.
Besides, foreign nationals working with international organisations are also entitled to duty-free liquor from DBWs.
The dbas.cbc.giv.bd:8080 system has been developed to check abuse of the duty-free facility too, customs officials said.
There is a rough estimate that abusing the duty-free facility, some vested quarters import foreign liquor officially and sell in the local markets.
The NBR officials alleged that they sell products without passbooks - issued by the CBC (for privileged persons), and tax exemption certificates - provided by the MoFA (for diplomats).
It has been alleged that the country's illegal liquor business is booming with supplies from two sources - leakage from some DBWs and smuggling.
Detailed process of offering and following the rules of DBW facility has been given in the circular.
Currently, eight DBWs are enjoying the duty-free import facility for privileged persons and diplomats.
The warehouses are Dacca Warehouse Ltd, Sabir Traders Ltd (STL), National Warehouse, TOS Bond (pvt) Ltd, Eastern Diplomatic Services, H Kabir and Co Ltd, Parjatan Corporation, and Biman Bangladesh Airlines.