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January 18, 2008

Cement-makers pay Rs900m less tax on lower prices


January 18, 2008

ISLAMABAD: Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has found that the cement manufacturers paid Rs900 million less tax during the first six months (July-Dec) of the current fiscal year owing to price reduction of Rs80 per bag of cement.

Chairman FBR Abdullah Yousaf had directed the Sales Tax authorities to apprise him about the causes of less revenue paid by the cement industry in the current fiscal year despite achieving higher growth.

According to the analysis done by the Sales Tax and submitted before the Chairman FBR office, the cement industry paid Rs1.7 billion tax during the first half of the current fiscal year compared to Rs2.6 billion in the same period of the last financial year.

It shows that there was less revenue of Rs900 million paid by the cement manufacturers in the current fiscal year. “The major cause for this revenue reduction was price differential in this period as the average price of per bag reduced from Rs300 to Rs220, registering a decrease of Rs80 per bag in the domestic market,” stated the analysis.

Tax generation also faced a severe blow by less revenue paid by the sugar tycoons during the current fiscal year, which was also attributed to lower prices of the commodity in the domestic market.

Keeping in view the lower prices, the FBR had also fixed its price of Rs 21 per kg for the purpose of 15% GST deduction. Earlier, the influential sugar tycoons were paying 15% General Sales Tax at the rate of Rs24 per kg but the notification issued by the FBR enabled them to reduce their tax liability by Rs 3 per kg.

The FBR had reduced it from Rs29 to Rs24 per kg for the purpose of deduction of taxes couple of years back. The government had accorded approval to erasing the 15% percent regulatory duty on export of sugar keeping in view the glut like sugar situation in the country.

It also increased the customs duty (CD) by 10 percent from 15 to 25 percent on import of sugar with an objective to discourage

the import of said commodity, as sugar is available in the country in abundance.

The sugarcane crop produce stands at 62 million tones out which 4.3 to 4.5 million tons of sugar would be produced. However, the country’s requirement stands at 4.2 million tons. The carryover stock stands at 5.28,000 tons, which means for next season, the total sugar availability will be standing around 5 million tons.

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