Digital publishers and bloggers of Pakistan, who recently managed to convince Punjab government to withdraw internet taxes, have now reached out to Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government with request for removal of taxes on internet.
Digital publishers had opposed internet taxes imposed by Punjab government by blacking out their websites in protest.
Now, when Punjab government has withdrawn tax on internet, digital publishers, internet companies and bloggers have written a letter to Mr. Parvez Khattak, Chief Minister, KPK with request for removal of internet taxes in the province of KPK.
For those who don’t know, KPK charges 19.5% internet taxes from wired broadband customers, however, 3G and 4G data users are not liable to internet taxes due to a restraining order from court.
Letter, that is copied to Mr. Imran Khan, Chairman PTI, as well, tries to explain the KPK government the benefits and long-term ROI of tax-free internet.
Letter said that broadband users in Pakistan grew 600% — all thanks to 3G and 4G networks — during the past one year and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa contributed a notable share. These trends promise tremendous amount of potential that broadband market poses for local and international investments.
Governments, while using tax-free internet, build multiple layers of tax-able economies of humongous magnitude
Digital publishers said that due to this increased internet usage in recent past, private and public sector organizations are already capitalizing the fruits of online solutions. Khyber Pakhtunkhwa’s online FIR registration facility is one such example that is likely to be replicated in other provinces because of its productivity and ease of use for the masses.
Digital publishers said that because Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaaf (PTI) in general and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government in specific are putting special focus on education and youth development, broadband penetration will not only impact positively on academic ventures of the KPK government but it will also help flourish the high-tech startup ecosystem involving young educated minds from the province.
Letter justified that increased broadband usage — with tax-free internet — will also mean feasible and smooth e-health, e-education, e-farming and other similar internet and smartphone based projects.
Publishers said that economies around the world are achieving wonders by keeping internet tax-free while taxing businesses that are established on the shoulders of internet. “This is exactly how other governments are building multiple layers of tax-able economy of humongous magnitude, just due to tax-free internet”, the letter said.