Norms amended for car imports by hospitality industry

May 28th, 2008 - 8:13 pm ICT by admin  

New Delhi, May 28 (IANS) The norms for importing cars, sports utility vehicles and other high-end automobiles at lower tariff by the hospitality industry has been amended by the Indian government to plug misuse and ensure their use only by authorised beneficiaries. Under the existing Foreign Trade Policy, import of such automobiles is permitted by hotels, travel agents, tour operators or companies owning and operating golf resorts under the export promotion capital goods scheme.

“Customs authorities will endorse in bill of entry while clearing such vehicles that such vehicles have to be registered as a vehicle for tourist purpose only,” says a circular by the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT).

“This would make purpose of import of vehicles absolutely clear and would also facilitate registration,” the circular said, in an obvious reference to the past when the norms were misused, resulting in losses to the exchequer.

The directorate also said the circular applies to past cases and that all such vehicles must be registered as tourist vehicles before Aug 31.

The intervention has come against the backdrop of several cases of misuse of the export promotion scheme, which allows import of cars by the hospitality industry at a concession based on their foreign exchange earnings.

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