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Exporters demand more incentives

FE Report | April 25, 2018 12:00:00

The National Board of Revenue (NBR) assured Tuesday the exporters to consider their demands for providing equal budgetary facilities to all export-oriented sectors.

"This year we will try to provide equal budgetary facilities to all export- oriented sectors. If we can do this, it would help increase the export volume of other sectors along with readymade garment," Md Mosharraf Hossain Bhuiyan, chairman of NBR said.

The NBR chairman's comment came at a pre-budget discussion meeting with exporters at its office in the city where they (exporters) demanded equal budgetary measures, including reducing corporate tax.

Leaders from Bangladesh Garment Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGMEA), Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BKMEA), Exporters Association of Bangladesh, Bangladesh Textile Mills Association (BTMA), Leathergoods and Footwear Manufactures and Exporters Association of Bangladesh (LFMEAB), Bangladesh Terry Towel and Linen Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BTTLMEA) and Bangladesh Frozen Food Exporters Association (BFFEA), among others, spoke in the meeting.

Bangladesh will have to withstand the growing competition in the global market in exporting its products once it graduates from LDC list, Mr Bhuiyan said. For that reason, exporters' should need incentives from the government to be competitive, he added.

Not only RMG which accounts for nearly 83 per cent of the country's total exports but also other sectors need to grow and increase their export earnings, the NBR chairman added.

Without the growth of all export-oriented sectors, long term sustainability is not possible, he opined.

"The government, taking the revenue issue into consideration, will try to provide all budgetary facilities for smooth businesses," he said adding steps would be taken for a win-win situation so that business can grow and government can also meet its revenue target.

BGMEA president Md Siddiqur Rahman made a plea to reduce corporate tax and fix it at 10 per cent and withdraw source tax for all export-oriented sectors irrespective of their export volume.

"There should be no source tax on export," he said adding the government gets only Tk 20 billion to Tk 25 billion as source tax from the country's readymade garment export worth $28 billion.

He also requested for digitalising the bonded ware house auditing system aiming to protect the misuse of the duty-free import facility.

BKMEA in its proposal requested for reducing source tax to 0.50 per cent and deduct the rate based on CM (cutting and making).

BTMA requested for reinstating the previous provision so that its member factories can import and release spare parts by showing certificates issued by the association.

It also demanded withdrawal of duty on flakes fabrics and fixing the wastage rate of cotton to 10 to 12 per cent and 15 to 18 per cent for local and export purposes use respectively.

LFMEAB's budget proposal included same facilities provided to RMG sector including duty-free import of electrical equipments and tax holiday for next five years.

Bangladesh Plastic Goods Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGAPMEA) in its budget proposals said export sectors should not be differentiated by various fiscal measures demanding 12 per cent corporate tax as enjoyed by RMG sector and reducing the source tax to 0.50 per cent.

BFFEA leaders demanded cash incentive for exporting live crabs.

Bangladesh Tea Association urged the government to control tea import and continue per kg tea import minimum tariff at $2.50.

BTTLMEA budgetary demands included reducing income tax to 10 per cent from existing 15 per cent and source tax to 0.50 per cent from 0.70 per cent for next five years.

Their other demands included withdrawal of tax on cash incentive and continue the existing zero per cent duty on import and 25 per cent duty on export of cotton waste.

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