Millers decry 15pc VAT on rod, steel

Staff Correspondent | Updated at 12:26am on June 15, 2017

Three associations related to rod and steel manufacturing on Wednesday called on the government to withdraw 15 per cent value added tax that would be slapped on iron rod under the VAT Act 2012.
The act would come into effect from July 1 this year.
The associations— Bangladesh Auto Re-Rolling and Steel Mills Association, Steel Mill Owners Association and Re-Rolling Mills Association— came with the call at a press briefing held at the Dhaka Chamber auditorium in the city on Wednesday.
Bangladesh Auto Re-Rolling and Steel Mills Association chairman Monwar Hossain said, ‘the government has been supporting the sector since 2009. But, everything will be spoiled due to the proposed budget for the fiscal year 2017-18.’
In 2009, annual use of rod was 18 lakh tonnes that has now increased to 50 lakh tonnes in a year, he said.
In spite of that, per capita use of iron rod in Bangladesh has been remaining lowest in the region.
Considering the imposition of VAT, price of per tonne rod will be increased to Tk 57,500, he said.
As rural people use 30 per cent, further increase in price of iron rod would drive its price out of their consumption and development activities would be in a halt subsequently, the chairman of the association said.
He said that imposition of VAT on the retail and wholesale level would increase hassle as businesses are not ready for such tax.
Re-Rolling Mills Association chairman Mohammad Ali, Steel Mill Owners Association chairman Sheikh Fazlur Rahman and Bangladesh Auto Re-Rolling and Steel Mills Association former chairman Sheikh Masudul Alam, among others, were present.