Telecom taxes in Pakistan second highest in world

ISLAMABAD: State Minister for Information Technology and Telecommunication Anusha Reham said on Thursday that Pakistan had second highest taxation in the world in the telecom sector.

Expressing serious concerns over heavy/double taxations on telecom sector, Anusha said that business environment for IT sector in the country was going to get very tough. After the federal government, provincial governments have also imposed heavy taxes on telecom sector, especially on broadband services, which was negatively impacting the business and growth of telecom sector, said the minister. She further said after the 18th Constitutional amendment, telecom was still a federal subject. Currently some provinces are collecting tax on services, which gave the perception and in reality as well, that there was double taxation in the country.

Currently national roaming was allowed and if provinces continued collecting taxes then it would require provincial roaming. Nobody could define the limits for acquiring telecom services while moving from one province to another. Anusha Rehman said that access to broadband services in the country was three percent before the launch of 3G/4G services, which has now jumped to around 15 percent. The committee discussed the “Telegraph (Amendment) bill 2014” moved by Asiya Nasir and unanimously agreed with its proposals.

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