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Monday July 22, 2024

APNS rejects 10pc GST on newsprint

Imposition of GST on newsprint would be disastrous for survival of already crisis-ridden print media

By Our Correspondent
June 13, 2024
A person reads a newspaper, whereas the tablets show The News e-paper editions open on the screen. — Jang Media Group/File
A person reads a newspaper, whereas the tablets show The News e-paper editions open on the screen. — Jang Media Group/File

KARACHI: The All Pakistan Newspaper Society (APNS) on Wednesday strongly rejected imposition of 10 per cent GST on import of newsprint, urging the federal government to continue exemption of GST to the print media.

In a joint statement, Ms Nazafreen Saigol Lakhani President and Sarmad Ali Secretary General stated that the imposition of the GST on newsprint imported by newspaper industry would be disastrous for the survival of the already crisis-ridden print media. They stated that the newsprint and other inputs used by newspapers are all imported and due to unprecedented depriciation of Pak rupee, the costs of newspapers have enormously increased. This has resulted in the increase of cover price of newspapers, which has badly affected their circulations. The financial crunch has been further exacerbated by the non payment of the outstanding dues of print media by the federal and provincial governments since long. The APNS office bearers stated that the newspaper industry was expecting measures to provide relief including 35% increase in the long overdue government advertisement rates, but instead GST has been levied in the financial bill.

They stated that print media is the fourth pillar of the state and serves the nation by protecting people’s right to know and expression. It is, therefore, obligatory on government to support the access of the people to information, especially in times of misinformation and disinformation.

The office bearers requested Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif to instruct the finance minister to withdraw the GST on newsprint.