Taxes on Telecom Sector a Threat to PM’s Digital Pakistan Vision: PTA

Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has termed the high taxes imposed on the telecommunication sector as not only a burden on telecom users but also an obstacle in achieving the ‘Digital Pakistan’ vision of Prime Minister Imran Khan.

PTA has resolved to continue persuading the Government of Pakistan to further rationalize the telecom taxes.

According to official documents obtained by ProPakistani, PTA believes that higher taxes have been levied on Pakistan’s telecom sector, both as compared to the taxes in other regional countries and to those imposed on other sectors within the country.

The documents read: “As a regulator, PTA believes that the ‘Digital Pakistan’ vision requires a boost in broadband proliferation and telecom access. The achievement of this goal demands the availability of cheap handsets and affordable telecom services, which is not possible sans reduction in prevalent taxes. As such, PTA will continue to persuade the government of Pakistan for continuation of the said tax relief and further rationalization of telecom taxes.”

It bears mentioning that PTA’s longstanding persuasion of the Government of Pakistan to rationalize taxes on the telecom sector resulted in tax relief being extended to the telecom sector and consumers in the federal budget 2021. Incentives such as relief in Federal Excise Duty/General Sales Tax, withholding tax, and SIM tax, in addition to the award of industry status to the telecom sector, have only started bearing fruit.