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    Khost customs revenue reaches 1 billion afghanis

    KHOST CITY (PAN): Southeastern Khost province’s customs revenue has increased by cent percent during the last nine months of the current Afghan year that started on March 21, officials said on Saturday.

    The revenue last year stood at 500 million afghanis ($10.1), but it reached more than a billion afghanis in the first nine months, deputy head of the customs department, Khai Mohammad Omar, said.

    He cited transparency in the department’s affairs and prevention of smuggling goods reasons behind the increased revenue. “If all the smuggling routes with neighbouring Pakistan are closed, the revenue can further increase,” he added.

    However, some residents accused the officials concerned of allowing traders to import goods without paying toll against bribes.

    Some traders offered bribe to officials to import their trade items in the night without paying duty, a trader, Sardar, told Pajhwok Afghan News.

    “This problem is not only affecting the government’s revenue, but also fueling distrust among traders on the customs officials,” he said.

    Acting head of the customs department confirmed the problem, saying they had prevented the menace to some extent.

    “Our officials patrol smuggling routes and when they seize illegally imported goods, they receive the tax with fine from the smugglers,” he said.