We have discussed before the taxes being paid via Telecom services in Pakistan and its impact on the sales of Cellular connections. Pakistani Cell phone users are paying almost one third of their money spent for services as taxes. This increment in taxes has consequently halved the sale of cellular SIMs (told by a cellular company official).
A recent research report published by Business Recorder claims that Pakistani cell phone subscribers are paying heightest taxes when compared to those countries in the region. Despite lowest call rates for Telecom services in Pakistan, these added taxes take the pricing heigher than of what we should have.
Below is the story taken from Business Recorder.
The Pakistani cell phone subscribers are paying more government taxes in the region, according to a telecom report, which says that phone subscribers are paying Rs 33.10 as government taxe on Rs 100 scratch card while in India it is Rs 12.24, in Bangladesh Rs 15, Sri Lanka Rs 17.50 and Nepal Rs 23.
The subscribers have expressed concern that while it is the age of communication and mobile phone is the cheapest source of communication, the government has made it more expensive by imposing high taxes. They said that mobile phone companies are offering attractive packages to subscribers but subscribers have to pay to government in the form of taxes.
Local traders of mobile phones Mohammad Ashraf, Abdul Qadeer and Waqas said that 33 percent cut on Rs 100 scratch card is injustice with the subscribers. They said the new government raised sales tax from Rs 15 to Rs 16 but in the telecom services the tax was raised to Rs 21.
Zubaida, a housewife, said that transport fares have reached the sky due to raise in POL prices and mobile phone was the only cheapest source to get information about relatives but the government also made it difficult for the poor people by imposing taxes.
The cell phone subscribers have demanded of PM Yousaf Raza Gilani and Federal Minister for Information Technology Qamar Zaman Kaira to reduce the taxes on telecom services so that the poor masses could get some relief in the age of inflation.