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Customs to hold ‘largest public auction’
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The Directorate General of Customs announced that it will hold the “largest public auction” to sell off abandoned and impounded merchandise. The auction will be held on April 25 at Port of Beirut.

Items include used and new vehicles, furniture, electric equipment and electronics, toys, office equipment, construction material, and clothing.

This merchandise had been stopped at the port for many reasons: Papers were not complete, or the importer could not pay financial obligations, or infiltration. Items to be auctioned have been in the custody of Customs for tens of years. The Customs Directorate usually holds smaller auctions to sell off some of the merchandise.

This is one of the ways that the Directorate says it will combat corruption and prevent the squandering of public funds. The auction will provide the Treasury with revenues, and will help clear up space that was used to hold impounded goods.

Around 200 items will be auctioned, 70 of which will be sold with the goal of re-export. Those goods cannot be used for local consumption and cannot enter the market. The total weight of merchandise is 1,320 tons.

Goods up for auction have an estimated total value of $2.5 million, according to Ali Beydoun, Assistant IT Manager at Customs. The merchandise will be free of fees and expenses.

New vehicles that were manufactured prior to eight-year cutoff will have to be disassembled and sold as spare parts, according to Beydoun.

By law, cars that are more than eight years old cannot be imported.

Winning bidders must pay in cash, and will one week to remove their items from the port.
Reported by Yassmine Alieh
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Date Posted: Apr 15, 2019