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LAHORE: Acceptance of LCCI demands regarding withdrawal of tax on solar panels and additional taxes on the food items is quite good but it would be better if the government consults the stakeholders before presenting the Supplementary Finance Bill in the national Assembly for the approval.

In a statement, president of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry Mian Nauman Kabir said that the government has rolled back its plan to impose additional sales taxes on children’s milk, bread and other bakery items and has also withdrew the proposal to impose taxes on solar panels. He said that these were demands of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry. “It is good but there is still a lot of thirst”, Mian Nauman Kabir said adding that the government would have to address the genuine reservations of the business community.

Mian Nauman Kabir said that all food items should be tax-exempted otherwise it will reduce the purchasing power of the common man. He said that the government should also revisit the taxation on Equipment for Green House Farming, raw material of Engineering Sector etc. He said that the government should realize the fact that it is business community who can lead the economy to the stability. “How business-friendly policies can be ensured when the main stakeholder is out of consultation process?” he questioned. He said it is responsibility of the government to ensure a business-conducive environment in the country.

The LCCI President said that the supplementary finance bill will further enhance the cost of doing business, give rise to the inflation, hinder business growth and hit the confidence of the foreign as well as local investors very hard.

LCCI Senior Vice President Mian Rehman Aziz Chan and Vice President Haris Ateeq said that 17% Sales Tax worth around Rs. 343 Billion are being imposed on various economic sectors. He said that no additional tax should be imposed on machinery, raw materials and other essentials for the industry as these will make it hard for the industrial sector to undertake technological up-gradation.

LCCI office-bearers said that the private sector needs supportive policies otherwise its competitiveness will be badly affected. The LCCI office-bearers said that our industry is heavily dependent on imports of quality raw materials as they are not available locally. The imposition of Sales Tax on the raw materials will hinder the growth. They said that the government should revisit its new taxation measures and take private sector on board.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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