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KARACHI: Pakistan Association of Printing and Graphic Art Industry (PAPGAI) and All Pakistan Paper Merchants Association (APPMA) have urged Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan, Federal Minister of Finance & Revenue Shaukat Tarin and Razak Dawood, Advisor for Commerce & Investment to intervene and abolish irregular 10 percent regulatory duty from woodfree paper HS code 4802 as announced in Federal Budget 2021-22 with, immediate effects.

Both the associations mutually in their post budget 2021-22 meeting, showed remorse, distress and condemned bureaucratic interference & obstacle to control government policy matter by interested powerful paper mills lobbies. In the meeting, associations’ members highly praised and thanked Prime Minister of Pakistan Imran Khan and Federal Minister of Finance and Revenue, who sincerely announced and reduced Customs Duty to 16 percent on Uncoated Paper & Paperboard (HS Code 4802) in Federal Budget 2021-22.

But on the other hand unsuitably and ill-advisedly from an interest group, imposed 10 percent Regulatory Duty (RD), despite of facts that 11 percent to 39 percent anti-dumping duty already exists in uncoated woodfree paper (HS Code 4802) this will needlessly increase cost of paper for making of books copies for educational sectors & also restrict printing & packaging industry to enter the US$900 billion export market.

Lawfully, RD cannot be enforced when anti-dumping duty already exists. This is sheer anomaly and double jeopardy taxation, in the form of compulsion of 10 percent RD, as well as existence of 11 percent to 39 percent anti-dumping duty.

Logic and common sense prevent two punishments at the same time i.e. RD and anti-dumping duty.

APPMA and its affiliated association PAPGAI have strongly raised highest customs duty & additional custom duty matter with the Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Commerce, National Tariff Commission (NTC) & Federal Board of Revenue, for the past 15 years, but lastly PTI government reduced custom duty to 16 percent but anomalously declared 10 percent regulatory duty in federal budget 2021-22 again deliberately safeguarding anomalous tariffs.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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