Sanitary pads, diapers import not ban: Finance Minister

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Finance Minister Miftah Ismail made it clear on Sunday that the government had not imposed an import ban on sanitary pads or diapers, adding that the restrictions applied only to “certain luxurious or non-essential goods”.

In a tweet, he said that there is no prohibition on “any industrial raw material.”

“The ban is only on some luxury or non-essential goods. And there is certainly no ban on sanitary pads or diapers (or their raw materials), which are essential goods,” he wrote.

The Minister added that the Government will release an official clarification on this subject today (Monday).

In the meantime, the government clarified on Saturday that SRO 598, which relates to the ban on the importation of luxury goods did not apply to inbound consignments of energy savers and certain preparation equipment used in animal feed.

However, the Ministry of Commerce stated that the prohibition against importing dog and cat food for retail purposes was still in place.

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In a clarification, the Ministry of Commerce also stated that SRO 598(1) /2022 does not apply to the importation of goods.

According to him, the importation of energy-saving appliances ( PCT code: 9405.1090) had been exempted from the ban.

Furthermore, it gave the green light to reverse the import ban on the material used in the preparation of animal feed. The SRO was issued in response to citizens’ concerns and some anomalies resulting from its implementation.

“It is shared for information and instant compliance,” it said.

On May 19, the Ministry of Commerce prohibited the importation of 38 items to control an inflated import bill and support the appreciation of the local currency.

According to the list, the ban was imposed on the import of CBU mobile phones, household devices, cosmetics, dishware, pet food, private weapons and ammunition, shoes, chandeliers and lighting, earphones, speakers, and more.

After the policy was announced, Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif defended the government’s decision saying that the decision to “ban the importation of luxury goods will save the country precious foreign exchange“.

We are going to practice austerity and financially stronger people must lead in this effort so that the least privileged of us do not have to bear this burden imposed by the PTI government,” he said on Twitter.

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