Finance minister AMA Muhith on Wednesday hinted at cutting down the proposed excise duty on deposits against the backdrop of huge criticism against the budgetary measure.
He dropped the hint after presiding over meetings of the cabinet committees on economic affairs and the national purchase at the secretariat.
He told reporters that discussion was going on in parliament on the proposed increase in excise duty.
The rate of excise duty might be reduced after the discussion, he said.
Muhith proposed increasing the excise duty on deposits to boost revenue collection in the new fiscal year that would begin from July 1.
Depositors of Tk 1 lakh to Tk 10 lakh would have to pay Tk 800 excise tax from current Tk 500.
For the depositors with balance between Tk 10 lakh and Tk 1 crore, the proposed excise duty would be Tk 3,000.
The excise duty would be Tk 15,000 for balance between Tk 1 crore and
Tk 5 crore and to Tk 30,000 for accounts over Tk 5 crore.
Muhith also proposed to waive excise duty deposits having less than Tk 1 lakh
At present, no excise duty is charged on balance of up to Tk 20,000.
Criticism in and outside parliament has been going on since the proposed increase in excise duty.
Several members of parliament have already called on the finance minister to reverse his decision.
State minister for finance and planning MA Mannan said in parliament on Tuesday that an acceptable solution would be found out through discussion.
Referring to Mannan’s statement, Muhith said the state minister “is not an irresponsible person.”
He said excise duty on deposit had been put in place from distant past.
There is no question for withdrawing the duty, he said while referring to demand by many to withdraw it completely.