Sunday, 19 August 2018
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Telecos should be fined if they excessively tax consumers

Dr. Muhammad Abdul Mazid, Former Chairman, National Board of Revenue : If telecom operators’ tax consumers excess of what is determined in the budget, they should be fined. Internet service providers, especially telecom operators, overcharge customers for services. These companies used to charge 15% vat on mobile users, but that rate has been cut to 5% in the 2018-19 fiscal budget. This is in effect from 1 July. However, there are obstacles in the system that has hampered its maintenance and enforcement, including preventing telecom operators from overcharging consumers. Unfortunately, we have been unable to escape from this.
If a new type of tax is initialized, it should be verified whether appropriate steps can be taken for its enforcement by the National Board of Revenue (NBR) if necessary. Additionally, stockholders should be positively informed about the outcomes.
Telecom operators should be taxed for the way they are overcharging consumers by defying the budget. Or else, consumers will suffer greatly.
Internet users are paying their fees properly, but the government is not receiving any revenue. Despite reducing internet VAT by 10%, the people could not reap any benefits. That is why strict enforcement is absolutely necessary.
Based on an interview by Ashiq Rahman, translated by Abrar Hussain

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