Pre-Budget Discussion

Ceramic makers demand withdrawal of SD on local production

Staff Correspondent | Published: 23:43, Mar 01,2021


The Bangladesh Ceramic Manufacturers and Exporters Association on Monday demanded withdrawal of supplementary duty on local production of tiles and sanitary ware and reduction of duties and taxes on raw materials to protect the local industry.

On the first day of the month-long pre-budget discussion with the National Board of Revenue, the BCMEA also demanded increase in the minimum tariff value of imported ceramic products, including tiles, sanitary ware and table ware to prevent under-invoicing and duty evasion at the import stage.

It also demanded tax holiday benefit for the ceramic industry for the next five years and withdrawal of 5 percent advance income tax on raw material import.

The revenue board started the pre-budget discussions as part of its preparation for the national budget for the upcoming fiscal year 2021-2022.

At the meeting, BCMEA president Md Shirajul Islam Mollah said that local industries were facing uneven competition from imported goods due to higher duties on raw material import, lower tariffs on imported finished goods and SD on local production.

Addressing the issues will not only protect the local industries but also create more jobs in the sector, he said.

He also said that the tax holiday scheme for ceramic industries located at economic zones had created uneven competition for those located outside the zones due to absence of such benefit for them.

The NBR should address the problem, he added.

The association demanded reduction of customs duty on import of printing ink for the industry.

It also said that the revenue board should withdraw 10per cent AIT on cash incentives given on export earnings.

Currently, there are a total of 68 industries in tableware, tiles and sanitary ware sectors with investments worth Tk 8,959 crore.

The factories are now meeting more than 90 per cent of domestic demand, according to the data of the BCMEA.

The sector’s export earnings stood at Tk 337.67 crore in FY2019-2020, it said.

NBR chairman Abu Hena Md Rahmatul Muneem said at the discussion that the government would do everything to protect the local industries and create employment.

The tax authorities will examine the proposals and take the necessary steps in the budget, he said.  BCMEA senior vice-president Moynul Islam, among others, spoke at the programme.

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