Pakistan Telecommunication Authority has asked Federal Board of Revenue to withdraw the recently imposed 20% regulatory duty on import of fiber optic cable, we have checked with sources.
According to details shared with ProPakistani, PTA asked the FBR to withdraw the tax as fiber optic cable is considered a basic component for the telecom sector, and such prohibitively high taxes will only hinder the industry.
Telecom companies are already paying 20% custom duty, 17% sales tax, 3% value added tax and 5.5% advance tax on the import of fiber optic cable.
On top of these taxes, government of Pakistan imposed another 20% regulatory duty on import of fiber optic cable in October 2017.
With all of these taxes, it has become impossible for internet service providers and mobile cellular companies to expand their services to new areas, reads the letter written by Pakistan Telecommunication Authority.
PTA said that the entire economy will be affected because of the new tax by FBR. In addition to home consumers being affected, high-cost of fiber optic layouts will mean slower roll-out and internet penetration growth.
The telecom authority said that such unrestrained taxes on fiber optic cable will impact the growth of safe city projects, communication related projects of CPEC, expansion of 3G and 4G network rollouts as well as high-speed internet for masses in areas where FTTH services are not available as of yet.
PTA noted that fiber optic cable is not a luxury item anymore as it is the most basic requirement for development in almost all sectors of the economy.