KARACHI: The Sindh government has collected a whopping Rs80.4 billion on account of infrastructure cess on imports from Karachi during the financial year 2022.

But, the irony of the fact is that Pakistan People’s Party-led Sindh government has allocated mere Rs 2.5 billion for the restoration of rain-affected infrastructure of Karachi – the mega city, and revenue engine of Pakistan.

According to the data, exclusively obtained by Business Recorder from the President of Karachi Chambers of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) Muhammad Idrees Memon, the provincial government has collected a total Rs 80.4 billion infrastructure cess on imports that include Rs 76.4 billion by sea and Rs 3.9 billion by air, during 2021-22.

In July 2021, the government collected Rs 6.4 billion infrastructure cess on imports from Karachi’s seaports, Rs 7.3 billion in August, Rs 6.7 billion in September, Rs 6.39 billion in October, Rs 6.36 billion in November, Rs 6.42 billion in December 2021, Rs 6.20 billion in January 2022, Rs 6.22 billion in February, Rs 6.22 billion in March, Rs 5.99 billion in April, Rs 5.7 billion in May and Rs 6.4 billion in June 2022.

Similarly, the in infrastructure cess tax collected by air stood around Rs 290 million in July 2021, Rs 357 million in August, Rs 377 million in September, Rs 273 million in October, Rs 339 million in November, Rs 407 million in December 2021, Rs 319 million in January 2022, Rs 292 million in February, Rs 332 million in March, Rs 365 million in April, Rs 343 million in May and Rs 258 million in June 2022.

“Sindh government has decided to restore rain-affected city’s infrastructure and the Sindh Cabinet in this regard has approved Rs2.5 billion from which Rs1.5 billion are for road maintenance on the route of People’s Bus Services and rehabilitation of various other roads,” Sindh Chief Secretary Dr Muhammad Sohail Rajput informed business community during his visit to Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) on Wednesday.

Zubair Motiwala, Javed Bilwani, AQ Khalil and other prominent exporters, and business leaders informed The CS about the issues of business community and the problems of the city and said that business community will help Sindh Government to improve the infrastructure of the city.

Speaking at the occasion, the chief secretary said the Korangi Causeway project will be completed by June 2024 at a cost of Rs 5 billion. He said that the experts have identified most vulnerable areas of the city and suggested an engineering solution for rain water drainage at Tower, Gulshan Iqbal 13D, University Road, PECHS and Ahsanabad areas.

He further said that the salaries of fire brigade employees and other issues will be resolved on priority basis.

“A canal, power station and treatment plant will be built on the Hub Dam which will minimize the water loses” said Chief Secretary Sindh.

“Public-private partnership projects will be carried out in collaboration with Karachi’s business community and an IT Park will be built in Karachi under Public Private Partnership” He said.

While assuring business community said that he will raise the issue of Citizen Oversight for Karachi projects in the upcoming meeting of Sindh Cabinet meeting. He further stetted that Thar Coal is a successful public private partnership project of the Government of Sindh. In response to a question, he said that the local body elections will be held on time.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022


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