The Ministry of Industries and Production (MoI&P) has moved a summary regarding extension in exemption of duties and taxes on products related to the supply of oxygen for another six months, reported Business Recorder.
These include oxygen gas, oxygen gas cylinders, cryogenic oxygen tanks, oxygen concentrators, generators, and manufacturing plants of all specifications and capacities, the newspaper report added.
The ministry had sought this waiver of taxes and duties on import of oxygen gas, cylinders and cryogenic tanks from the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet, on June 22 last year. The ECC approved the proposal, which the Cabinet then ratified on June 23, 2020. The exemptions approved at the time were applicable until September 22, 2020.
Another summary was submitted by the ministry on December 24, 2020, which was also approved by the cabinet, but that has also expired now.
As a result of these incentives, new oxygen manufacturing plants were set up across the country, which expanded Pakistan’s oxygen manufacturing capacity from 487 M/T per day to 790 M/T per day.
Now, with the onset of the third deadly wave of the Covid-19 pandemic, the manufacturers have once again approached the ministry of industries to allow duty-free import of relevant products so that uninterrupted supply of oxygen gas may be ensured at competitive rates.
National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) has also recommended for this waiver to be extended, in its meeting held on April 24, 2021. Keeping these in sight, the ministry has filed a request that these exemptions may further be extended for 180 days to cope with the third wave of the pandemic.