Shaheen Air in trouble as FBR initiates legal action over unpaid duties

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KARACHI: The Federal Bureau of Revenue (FBR) has decided to initiate legal action against Shaheen Air over alleged non-payment of federal excise duty (FED) amounting to around Rs490 million.

While talking to the media, FBR’s Large Tax Unit Additional Commissioner Nisar Burki said that Shaheen Air owed an accumulated federal excise duty (FED) of Rs497 million between April and June 15 for the current year. He added that the airline took FED from passengers by charging between Rs2,500 and Rs5,000 on each ticket but did not pay the amount to the national exchequer, hence causing a loss to the country.

Nisar Burki said that the FBR sent multiple notices to Shaheen Air but did not receive any response. The officer added they would initiate legal action against the airline as the deadline of paying the FED passed at 2 pm on Thursday.

However, when asked, the spokesperson of Shaheen Airline said it was not in his knowledge if any such notice was sent by FBR.

In May, FBR asked Civil Aviation Authority to suspend local flight operations of Shaheen Air over failure to pay FED. The FBR also directed a bank to attach all the accounts of the company with immediate effect.

According to a letter sent to the director general of CAA, Rs521.397 million was recoverable from the Shaheen Air International Limited under Federal Excise Act, 2005, but the airline spokesperson had said there was no conflict between them and FBR as it was a common matter of delayed payment.