MUZAFFARABAD: The Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK) government will constituted a task force to be led by the Finance Secretary to evolve an effective mechanism for checking the revenue leakages from the cigarette industry in the state.
Speaking at a policy dialogue held on the topic of “Illicit Trade in Tobacco Sector”, AJK Finance Minister Latif Akbar emphasized the need for foolproof strategy to plug the tax revenue leakages which had been causing great loss to the exchequer.
Speaking to the audience, the AJK Chief Secretary directed the authorities concerned to ensure proper tax collection from cigarette manufacturing units. On the occasion, senior AJK officers informed the participants that there were 14 cigarette manufacturing units located in AJK of which five were operational. Some of the remaining units are either non-operational or already sealed by the government for violation of tax laws, the added.
According to the data shared during the session, most of the cigarettes produced in these manufacturing units are then shipped to Pakistan and are widely available at prices.
Pakistan Tobacco Board (PTB) has offered its full support to the AJK government in its efforts to curb leakages of revenue.