Telecom Imports rise by 54% in July 2017 after Tax Incentives

Telecom imports and mobile phone imports

It is no hidden secret that telecom sector is one of the highly taxed sectors of Pakistan but lately it is witnessing a positive trend.

According to the latest data released by the Pakistan Bureau of Statistics (PBS), in July 2017 the country has seen an import of telecom apparatus and mobile sets worth $114.01 million.

This number of telecom imports is around 54% higher than the one witnessed in the same month last year i.e. $74.26 million.

Reportedly, the growth in the telecom imports can be credited to the tax incentives provided by the budget 2017-18. According to The Express Tribune, the import of telecom equipment and mobile phones have increased by more than 50% after the government offered these tax incentives to the companies.

Previously, the government placed a uniform regulatory duty of 9% instead of customs duty of 11% and 16%. Also, we saw the reduction in withholding taxes placed on mobile phones calls from 14% to 12.5% and excise duty on calls also saw a reduction from 18.5% to 17%.

Though, during the budget speech, many importers rejoiced at the announcement of reduced customs duty from Rs. 1000 to Rs. 650, they later realized their mistake. The government has placed an additional Rs. 250 regulatory duty on every mobile phone that would be imported from July 1st.

Moreover, the Pakistani government has also merged lower limit duty slabs of Rs. 300 and Rs. 1,000 into one single slab of Rs. 650, meaning the importers will have to pay Rs. 350 additionally on every feature phone.

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