Govt urged to reinstate tax rebate for teachers, researchers

By Afshan S. Khan
June 23, 2024
This representational image shows a teacher taking a class at a school. — AFP/File

Islamabad : The Association of Private Sector Universities of Pakistan (APSUP) and the Association of Private Medical Institutions of Pakistan (PAMI) have jointly issued an urgent appeal to the Government of Pakistan, addressing the President, the Chairman Senate, the Prime Minister, and the Finance Minister.


The associations call for the immediate restoration of tax rebate for teachers and researchers and the reinstatement of sales tax exemptions for non-profit organizations (NPOs) and hospitals, as proposed changes in the Finance Bill 2024 threaten to severely impact the education and healthcare sectors.

Restoration of Tax Rebate for Full-Time Teachers and Researchers APSUP and PAMI highlight the dire state of education in Pakistan, where millions of children are out of school, and those who attend often receive inadequate education.

The removal of the tax rebate for full-time teachers and researchers, previously outlined in Clause (2) of Part III of the Second Schedule to the Income Tax Ordinance, 2001, exacerbates the financial and operational challenges faced by educational institutions.

This measure undermines the government's commitment to education and risks a further decline in the quality of higher education by making it harder to attract and retain qualified faculty. “We respectfully urge the government to issue immediate instructions to restore the tax rebate for full-time teachers and researchers, reverting to the pre-budget position through appropriate administrative and legislative means,” stated Prof. Dr. Ch. Abdul Rehman, Chairman APSUP, and Prof. Dr. Riaz Shahbaz Janjua, General Secretary PAMI.

Restoration of Sales Tax Exemptions for Hospitals and NPOs The Finance Bill 2024 also proposes the withdrawal of Clause 166 and the omission of the words ‘Imported by or’ from Clause 165 of Table 1 of the Sixth Schedule to the Sales Tax Act, 1990. This change imposes an 18% sales tax on supplies to hospitals and NPOs, including essential medical and surgical equipment. Such a financial burden threatens the viability of these institutions, which provide critical healthcare services to underprivileged communities, often free or at subsidized rates. “We earnestly request the Honourable Prime Minister and the Minister of Finance & Revenue to take necessary steps to suspend the proposed changes in the Finance Bill 2024 and restore the sales tax exemptions for hospitals and NPOs,” emphasised Mian Imran Masood, spokesperson APSUP, and Dr. Rizwan Sagheer Chatha, Spok­esperson PAMI.

The associations str­essed the urgent need for the government to reconsider these budgetary measures to ensure the continued support and deve­lo­pment of Pakistan's education and healthcare sectors. They expressed confidence in the empathy and commitment of the current administration to address these pressing issues.