LAHORE: Customs Central Region held a meeting with the business community urging them to present their proposals for the upcoming budget 2019-10. Chief Collector of Customs Zeba Hai Azhar presided over the meeting and consulted with the traders about their input for the budget.
LCCI Vice-President Fahemur Rehman while presenting the budget proposals urged the government to undertake tariff rationalization, refunds, financing to industry and industrial expansion, to free trade agreements, ease of doing business and taxation system.
The VP presented that private sector of the country wants to supplement the government’s efforts aimed at economic revival of the country. He said that joint proposals will help make budget document business friendly which would ultimately would result in a robust export-led growth.
He also presented that customs duties on all raw materials should be zero or low and government must eliminate regulatory duties and additional customs duty on raw materials so that local industry can be able to compete with the smuggling and mitigate the effect of low tariff Free Trade Agreements.
He presented that rate of duties for trade and industry must be same so that SMEs who procure from trade, should have a level playing field.
Customs duties on intermediary products should be reduced so that our industry can be able to import quality materials, components and machinery from the rest of the world.
He also presented that non-payment of refunds is drying out liquidity from the market. Payment through promissory notes should also be extended to all sectors including five zero rated sectors. Refunds should be issued automatically without application, or pre-audit, within 60 days as per rules.
He presented that markup rate should be reduced as it has made borrowing expensive. Benefit of tax holiday should not just be for new projects but also for expansions.
He said that provincial governments should re-zone areas in and around urban centers, both for industrial and commercial use to help entrepreneurs invest in green field and other projects. Foreign investment should only be allowed as a joint venture or as a public listed company so that local investors also benefit. A number of traders and businessmen from divers sectors were present on the occasion.
Chief Collector Zeba Hai Azhar assured that that their budget proposals would be put before the Federal Board of Revenue authorities who are engaged in the budget making.