Ce­ment man­u­fac­tur­ers seek tax re­lief in fed­eral bud­get

Pakistan Observer - - ECONOMY WATCH -

ISLAMABAD—Ce­ment man­u­fac­tur­ers have de­manded the govern­ment here on Satur­day to cut taxes in up­com­ing Fis­cal Year (FY) 2016-17 fed­eral bud­get and to take steps to erad­i­cate smug­gling of the prod­uct. Pak­istan is self-suf­fi­cient in pro­duc­tion of ce­ment as over 30 mil­lion tone pro­duc­tion is recorded an­nu­ally out of which around 70 lac tone is ex­ported.

Ce­ment Man­u­fac­tur­ers As­so­ci­a­tion’s Pres­i­dent, Muhammad Ali Tabba while talk­ing to pri­vate news chan­nel said, that the govern­ment in­creased duty on coal from one per­cent to five per­cent and then to six per­cent. He said that ce­ment’s pro­duc­tion cost for the man­u­fac­tur­ers re­mains un­changed de­spite re­vised coal prices due to im­po­si­tion of dif­fer­ent taxes. Cheaper pro­duc­tion cost through re­duced coal price would have ben­e­fit­ted the buy­ers but when taxes come in the pic­ture, in­stead the price goes up.

Ac­cord­ing to the man­u­fac­tur­ers, cheaper in cost ce­ment is smug­gled from neigh­bor coun­try that dam­ages sales in local mar­ket. Cur­rent price of a ce­ment bag is stag­nated at Rs 525 than pre­vi­ous Rs 500, af­ter ad­di­tion of taxes de­spite re­duced coal price. It should be men­tioned here that growth in num­ber of de­vel­op­ment projects and in­creased hous­ing schemes are lift­ing ce­ment sec­tor’s pro­duc­tion by 15 per­cent ev­ery year.—APP

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