Laptop Shipping to Pakistan-Please Advise


#1

Ok so I have done extensive research on this topic via wiredpakistan's old website, and have gotten immense info, but still have some questions...

Basically, I am shipping a laptop to Pakistan as a gift, via USPS EMS, insured.

And I also know laptops have 0 % duty but fedex/dhl usually charge some mysterious 20% tax, therefore i chose to ship via USPS EMS.

Now, my question is, I have thoroughly searched FBR website and read every document (yes even the 100 page ones lol) and finally found an exemption list of taxes on which computer and their parts, *ARE* exempt from tax. BUT, I also know !@#$., my beloved country is corrupt. So of course my fear is customs will put some sort of levy/tax on it. I have even printed out the 0% duty list AS WELL AS the Tax exemption list and placed it in the box. In addition, I think only FEDEX/DHL/UPS packages are the ones who charge this mysterious 20% GST/VAT not USPS/Pak Post? Is this correct?

And also EMS is time sensitive (has to get there within 3-5 days) so it goes through customs quickly, no? I know they usualy hold Priority mail, but EMS is quickly cleared and delivered to door, correct?

I'm super scared and nervous as you can tell, so anybody out there with any advice, on USPS EMS/Laptop shipping/Tax charges by Pak Post and/or Customs for a Laptop please do help!

This laptop is for my preg. sister, it has a webcam and all so i can see the baby when inshAllah she, my niece is born. Just don't want tax to be overwhelming, in fact don't even want to pay tax when it is exempt from both tax and duty.

THANK YOU!!

Once again, FBR Customs duty list on page 75 I believe states laptops are 0% duty. And the GST Bill 2010, and Sales Tax handbook, on page 13-14 I believe (Number 47) Clearly states "Unsolicted gifts sent via POST having zero customs duty are exempt from sales tax"

So just wondering if anyone has sent a gift laptop via USPS EMS and had to pay duty? (If FBR states there is no duty AND no tax)?


#2

EMS parcel(s) can take up to 2 weeks to reach the destination GPO. From there onward, the GPO notification for parcel pick-up can take a further week unless you keep yourself up to date from online tracking and call to confirm arrival of parcel.

You have to go to customs and hand over 'gift(s)'. :/ Then the parcel is released.

Priority Mail (Air parcel?) gets delivered to the addressee and any taxes are handed over to the post man.

Even if the customs duty is zero, there are other charges (real and made up) which can significantly lighten your wallet.


#3

Hey Asad, Thanks for the Reply! EMS USPS from USA to Pak. acutally is alot faster (3-5 days) vs Priority which is 6-10 days. So EMS would take three weeks? :o

Also, I emailed Customs Helpline, so they replied to me:

For a Gift Laptop to Pakistan, Customs Duty is Zero (According to Tariffs Guide) and then the rep. told me...

"Custom duty on laptop is zero

GST is 17%

WH Tax is 5%

Please Read Sixth Schedule STA 1990"

So, I did...and this is what the Sixth Schedule says..

"Articles Imported through post as unsolicited gifts, subject to the same conditions as are envisaged for the purposes of applying zero-rate of customs duty under the Customs Act, 1969 are EXEMPT from Sales Tax.."

So from what i get from this, its basically saying, My laptop is an unsolicited gift, it is going via USPS/Pak Post, AND it applies zero rate duty, therefore it should be exempt from tax as listed in sixth schedule of STA 1990.

Correct? So i just emailed customs, thanking them for referring me to sixth schedule and they are wrong, i shouldnt have to pay tax on a gift sent to pakistan via post that has zero rate customs duty. Lets see what they write back?


#4

^ They "conveniently' forgot to mention the FED/CED of around 2%, IIRC.


#5

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

^ They "conveniently’ forgot to mention the FED/CED of around 2%, IIRC.
[/quote]

Sorry what does this stand for? And my laptop was only $450-500 so even 2% is ok with me! But 15-20% is unacceptable on an unsolicited gift, esp. when its IN their own Sales Tax Act.


#6

Federal/Central Excise Duty, AFAIK.


#7

K thanks! Will look into that! Thanks Asad! :-)


#8

So any luck with ordering the laptop. I myself am going thru a similar situation


#9

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

So any luck with ordering the laptop. I myself am going thru a similar situation
[/quote]

Hey, I am actually the on sending it to !@#$. to my sister, don’t want her to pay taxes cause well. she didn’t buy it from me, I am sending it as a gift.

As far as luck, what I’ve gotten so far from the three guidelines I have read

1.)Customs Tariff- 0% duty on laptops

2.) Sales Tax Act of 1990 and General Sales Tax Bill 2010- Items sent through Post (USPS/Pak Post…I think FEDEX/DHL/UPS do NOT count) as unsolicited gifts (mark as gift on package), which have zero-rate customs duty ( a laptop does) are exempt from Sales Tax.

3.) Just read about FED- Federal Excise Tax, read the tables on goods which are taxed, and it seems to be mostly food/tobacco/ etc…no mention of electronics or computers or laptops…about them having tax.

So IDEALLY it seems from the FBR website and documents, Laptops have 0 duty, exempt from Sales Tax/GST if marked as gift and sent through post AND don’t seem to be on the list for Federal Excise…so it should IDEALLY be no cost to send one to pakistan as a gift through USPS/Pak Post only.

Now, this is what I got from reading everything. Anyone out there with personal experience please share? I’m hoping to get to the bottom of this with customs, or even the Pak post rep. who will deliver the laptop to my sister. Once again I even plan to put all these documents with highlighting showing customs I have done my homework so they can’t rip me off in the box, plus I am gift wrapping it.

But anyone out there with experience who has sent a laptop via USPS Express Mail (or priority, I prefer express. Its faster) please advise. I know people who have Fedex and DHL you have haid to pay 20% tax…but anybody send via USPS/Pak Post with personal experience?

Thanks


#10

there is no custom duty. However, you cannot avoid taxes, like WHT,, GST, IT blah blah + hidden charges from these companies, they are thieves, believe me. Best way is to send it by hand.

I myself imported laptop, 1st time got lost through USPS, luckily was insured at $500 so shipped it again via fedex & paid heavy taxes as mentioned above. So do not make a mistake of importing via shipping. Find someone who can bring by hand or search the local market, mostly everything available.

USPS is cheap but goods will end up at post office (all haramis & thieves there). Courier companies are thieves also but in better disguise.


#11

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

there is no custom duty. However, you cannot avoid taxes, like WHT, GST, IT blah blah + hidden charges from these companies, they are thieves, believe me. Best way is to send it by hand.

I myself imported laptop, 1st time got lost through USPS, luckily was insured at $500 so shipped it again via fedex & paid heavy taxes as mentioned above. So do not make a mistake of importing via shipping. Find someone who can bring by hand or search the local market, mostly everything available.

USPS is cheap but goods will end up at post office (all haramis & thieves there). Courier companies are thieves also but in better disguise.

[/quote]

Yeah I wish I had someone to take it by hand But I don’t :frowning: so USPS lost it in Pakistan I’m assuming and they gave you back the $500, correct?

Yeah I agree, the problem is USPS or Pak Post rather will lose or steal it but have lower taxes, and Fedex/DHL won’t, but they have a huge tax amount.

And the taxes, like I said, I have read every little document from FBR and all of them say gifts are exempt from taxes, so I don’t know yeh WHT,GST,IT kahan se leathe hain? Once again, I am shipping to my sister.

I understand koe pakistan mein bethke Ebay, Amazon se order kare so it’ll have tax on it, but on a gift?!?!?!


#12

offcourse, USPS paid back.

if you want to send it as gift, it might be exempted from taxes, but then you have to declare the value around 30 or 40$ max and mention only gift, nothing else.

I imported an iphone from uk via UPS, value declared was $10 (actual value was 600 pounds) & only "gift" was written on invoice. I only end up paying Rs. 500/- :) but then there was risk of losing the shipment, also it was small package, perhaps got unnoticed. you never know.


#13

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

offcourse, USPS paid back.

if you want to send it as gift, it might be exempted from taxes, but then you have to declare the value around 30 or 40$ max and mention only gift, nothing else.

I imported an iphone from uk via UPS, value declared was $10 (actual value was 600 pounds) & only “gift” was written on invoice. I only end up paying Rs. 500/- :) but then there was risk of losing the shipment, also it was small package, perhaps got unnoticed. you never know.

[/quote]

Uff im so confused! Lol…i Guess i will send it with the actual value insured via USPS and see what happens? Lol…My cousin who has been sendning gifts for the past ten years via USPS, even has sent gold jewelry and cash said tho wrap it with bras lol, the customs are to uncomfortable to inquire the package lol…nothing has even been lost or stolen at all…


#14

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

I understand koe pakistan mein bethke Ebay, Amazon se order kare so it’ll have tax on it, but on a gift?!?!?!
[/quote]

How do you define a gift? Is your definition the same as the customs inspector who will decide whether to believe the declaration or to declare it as undervalued and commercial item just so he can ask for his ‘share’?

Rules are one thing. What actually happens there is a whole world apart from what’s written in mere books and documents.


#15

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

How do you define a gift? Is your definition the same as the customs inspector who will decide whether to believe the declaration or to declare it as undervalued and commercial item just so he can ask for his ‘share’?

Rules are one thing. What actually happens there is a whole world apart from what’s written in mere books and documents.

[/quote]

hmmm… just a quick layman common sense…

as i read above there is no duty on laptops and secondly its a very common item, so i guess there is nothing for custom officer to think and decide, and someone whose importing is as long he pays the freight and maybe port handling charges then he should get without any problem and the custom officer job should be no more than to make sure that laptop is really laptop and there are no illegal stuff hidden or brought along with it thats it. since its a very common item then obviously there will be very well written customs guidelines on it. for custom officer to ask anything else beyond that would be considered unnecessarily giving hard time and unethical

now if customs officer/appraiser bud in and make his own decision in scenario like lets say if macdonald franchise owner is importing some proprietor y macdonald food preparation machine which is only exclusive to macdonald only and its not common item and there are no customs written guidelines for that item then in this case if customs officer/appraiser use his own judgment to value that item that how much custom duty should be, then this is justifiable.


#16

#17

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

hmmm… just a quick layman common sense…

as i read above there is no duty on laptops and secondly its a very common item, so i guess there is nothing for custom officer to think and decide, and someone whose importing is as long he pays the freight and maybe port handling charges then he should get without any problem and the custom officer job should be no more than to make sure that laptop is really laptop and there are no illegal stuff hidden or brought along with it thats it. since its a very common item then obviously there will be very well written customs guidelines on it. for custom officer to ask anything else beyond that would be considered unnecessarily giving hard time and unethical

now if customs officer/appraiser bud in and make his own decision in scenario like lets say if macdonald franchise owner is importing some proprietor y macdonald food preparation machine which is only exclusive to macdonald only and its not common item and there are no customs written guidelines for that item then in this case if customs officer/appraiser use his own judgment to value that item that how much custom duty should be, then this is justifiable.

[/quote]

Hey agreed, but I have read and heard about a lot of people that have to pay Hazaro to customs for laptop gifts.


#18

You cannot predict how much they will charge you, you can also not, say show them that there is no custom i.e. showing them the docs from FBR website and what not because once the shipment is tagged with whatever tax they want to ask for, you HAVE to pay. They won't reverse it for you, they will simply not hand over the shipment if payment is not done.


#19

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

You cannot predict how much they will charge you, you can also not, say show them that there is no custom i.e. showing them the docs from FBR website and what not because once the shipment is tagged with whatever tax they want to ask for, you HAVE to pay. They won’t reverse it for you, they will simply not hand over the shipment if payment is not done.
[/quote]

Agreed. God Bless our lawless, corrupt country lol…Its not the US where anything and everything is argueable through manuals and guidelines. Thats why bad eggs here cannot get away. You show them the rules and regulations, they apologize because they dont want to lose their jobs. Over there, like you said, you HAVE to pay…oh well, they will have to pay in the afterlife lol…so i guess jokes on them. what can you do


#20

[quote=", post:, topic:"]

what can you do
[/quote]

after reading all the posts in this thread and countless thread before on the same subject i sure can tell you what you can do?

1- either buy locally, you may pay extra cost 25% to 35% extra on laptops here. but you’ll get the possession of laptop as soon as you pay the seller case closed.

2- or buy it in foreign country and bring it back in ““personal baggage”” when you or friend or relative return.