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Sunday July 14, 2024

Tobacco growers oppose new taxes

By Bureau report
June 05, 2024
A representational image shows a farmer in a tobacco field in a foreign country. — AFP/File
A representational image shows a farmer in a tobacco field in a foreign country. — AFP/File

PESHAWAR: Expressing concern over imposition of new taxes in the budget, the tobacco growers on Tuesday urged the provincial government to take back the decision and save the farmers from an embarrassing situation.

“The 700 percent increase in taxes will destroy the sector. The farmers can’t afford this and will stop growing tobacco,” Rustam Khan, member Pakistan Tobacco Board and president Farm Service Centre Mansehra told a press conference here.

Various representatives of tobacco growers, including Akhtar Zaib, President Tobacco Growers Association, Prof Hameed Rehman, President Buner Tobacco Association, Shamsher Bacha and others were also present on the occasion.

“Tobacco crop is the only cash crop of the province. And around 1.2 million people in the province depended on it,” Rustam said, adding that over 75,000 farmers were involved in tobacco cultivation.

In the current budget of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, he said, tax on tobacco had been increased by 700 percent with the ratio of Rs6 per kg to Rs50 per kg.After this increase, he added, the cigarette companies would reduce their demand for the next year and not buy tobacco from farmers.