Govt ensures tax relief on medicines, food, essential items: FBR

Govt ensures tax relief on medicines, food, essential items: FBR

ISLAMABAD (APP) – Envisaging protection of common people, the government through Budget 2019-20 has provided tax relief on various daily-use essential products including medicines, food and beverages as well as their inputs, a senior official of Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) said.

The FBR official said that tax relief and exemption have been provided on various health sector commodities including lifesaving medicines and medical equipment. “The government exempted Custom Duty (CD) on 18 medical products and their inputs, health and medical units, medicines of rare disease; mobile health units and free operation theaters,” the official added.

He said that exemption of duties on raw material for hemodialyzers used by kidney patients to facilitate kidney patients. The official said that tax relief has also been provided for home appliance and different on edibles.

In order to tap true potential of tourism industry, the government had also given tax relaxation on various products used by the industry as it had decreased duty from 11 percent to 8 percent on pre-fabricated structures used for building hotels.

He said the government has also incentivized the local industry for industrial growth and promotion of country’s exports and had given exemption of duties on more than 1,650 raw materials and industrial inputs for supporting the local industries.

Replying to a question, he said the government had reduced the duties on different sectors including printing paper industry, wood and furniture, LED panel manufacturing, liquid food industry, fabric, machinery part of textile industry, home appliances and yarn industries sectors.

However, he added that duties on luxury items and non essential had been enhanced as part of strategy to discourage imports of such products. He said that in slab 16; tax duties have been increased from 2 percent to 4 percent, and in slab 20 customs duties and tariffs taxes have also been increased on luxury and non-essential items. He said that revenue impact of the increase of these duties was worth Rs 30 billion.

The official said that zero rating of five export-oriented potential local industries have been maintained, having revenue impact Rs 300 billion annually. He informed that the government had introduced the new tax slabs under which Rs 15 billion tax relief would be provided on finished product for promoting local manufacturing. He said the government had introduced the 10th schedule for resolving the issues of non filers in the country.

Replying to a question, he said the government had finished all the Statuary Regulatory Orders (SROs) for having medium and long strategy to broaden the tax net and enhance the tax base in tax system. He said the government has also evolved strategy to stop trade-based money laundering.