Telecom industry opposes tax measures, warns of industry exodus

ISLAMABAD: The telecom industry has voiced strong opposition to the taxes imposed in the new fiscal year budget, labeling them as detrimental to the industry’s survival.

In a letter addressed to the Federal Minister of IT, the telecom industry decried the budgetary taxes as catastrophic, warning of severe repercussions on investment and operational viability. The industry contends that escalating tax burdens will lead to legal disputes and ultimately force telecom companies to exit Pakistan.

Highlighting the critical role of internet connectivity in Pakistan’s economy, the letter asserts that increased taxes will impede digitalization efforts, hindering economic growth. Moreover, the proposed measures are deemed detrimental to both the telecom industry and the broader economy.

Specific grievances include the technical infeasibility of 75% advance tax collection on non-filers and the imposition of hefty penalties for non-compliance with tax regulations.

Additionally, the 18% sales tax on mobile phones priced up to $500 threatens to hamper access to digital services for low-income earners, undermining the vision of Digital Pakistan.

The telecom industry’s stance underscores mounting concerns within the sector regarding the adverse impacts of the proposed tax measures, signaling a potential showdown between industry stakeholders and the government.


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