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'Reduce corporate tax

Women entrepreneurs seek three-year tax holiday

Pre-budget meeting

FE Report | April 09, 2018 00:00:00

The Bangladesh Women Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BWCCI) has proposed granting a three-year tax holiday for the startups run by women while the India-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IBCCI) suggested reducing corporate tax in the upcoming budget.

Representatives of both the organisations made the recommendations during a pre-budget meeting with NBR Chairman Md Mosharraf Hossain Bhuiyan at the NBR conference room in the city on Sunday.

The IBCCI also suggested that the NBR (National Board of Revenue) should broaden the tax net but keep the tax rate at a tolerable level in the budget for the 2018-19 fiscal year (FY).

It also stressed the need for increasing the flow of foreign direct investment (FDI) for massive industrialisation in the country to turn it into a developed one by 2041.

The other recommendations of the IBCCI include lifting the regulatory duty and supplementary duties on the import of raw materials for biscuits and confectionery and dry cell battery industries, reducing the rate of income tax on the total income of publicly traded company, lowering the rate of deduction of tax at sources against payment for transport service, and allowing registration and maintenance of a single VAT account for more than one manufacturing units under the same ownership and management.

The representative of BWCCI also put forward various suggestions to the NBR such as allocating Tk 10 million in the upcoming budget for the development of women entrepreneurs as in the previous budgets, fixing the tax-free income threshold for women entrepreneurs to Tk 0.4 million, tax exemptions for the import of capital machinery and tax and VAT exemptions for women-run business establishments with annual turnover of up to Tk 5.0 million.

NBR Chairman Md Mosharraf Hossain Bhuiyan said most small restaurants and sweetmeat shops don't give tax to the government.

Although most traders are now aware of tax obligations, many of them are either unaware of VAT (value added tax) or reluctant to pay, he added.

He also said the government needs money to finance development projects, provide public healthcare services and education and for various other purposes.

He, however, assured the chamber leaders of considering their recommendations while preparing the next budget.

Vice-President of IBCCI Dewan Sultan Ahmed, its Secretary and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Jahangir Bin Alam and senior Vice-President of BWCCI Sangita Ahmed, among others, were present at the meeting.

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