Govt handed evidence in tax evasion on NATO fuel imports
KABUL (Pajhwok): The Wolesi Jirga’s commission on counternarcotics on Tuesday handed over evidence regarding tax evasion amounting to one billion dollars on fuel imports for foreign troops to the government.
Lawmaker Mohammad Naeem Lalai Hamidzai, the parliamentary panel head, told a press conference here that some traders and importers of fuel had been exempted from customs duties on fake documents to import fuel for foreign troops.
He said he had handed over the evidence to Mohammad Wali Minanak, the head of the lower house commission on communications, to share it with the Presidential Palace, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) office, the National Security Council and the Attorney General Office.
Hamidzai asked the government to assign a delegation to urgently investigate the issue and interrogate those causing losses to the national revenue.
Last week, the commission said 90 percent of imported fuel in the name of foreign forces had been sold in the open market and high-ranking officials and 20 companies had earned more than $1 billion from the tax evasion.
Hamidzai said the accused companies had supplied only 10 percent of the imported fuel to foreign troops and had sold the rest 90 percent in the open market.
He said the tax evading companies included Afghani Legol, National Fuel Corporation, General Logistics, Maihan Selab, Afghan retailers’ Company, Khawar Sadat, Ghazanfar fuel and gas, Red Star, Safi Ltd, Aryana Target Petroleum, Arya Target Logistics, Parwan Group, Oro General Logistic, Khawak Petroleum, Zamaray Sami, Klied Sadal Group, WFS/SKA and WEC.
The companies had imported nearly five million tonnes of fuel and earned more than one billion dollars by not paying taxes; he said, adding that more than two million tonnes of fuel had been processed and waiting to be imported to the country.
The lawmaker said officials from the judiciary, lawmakers and the executive, one former vice president, interior, defence, foreign and commerce ministers and a former head of the National Directorate of Security (NDS) were involved in the fraud.
“If the issue is not investigated, the people of Afghanistan will be directly affected and the country will face a financial crisis,” he said, calling the issue more serious than the Kabul Bank scandal.
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