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Internet tariff won’t go up

  • Published at 01:03 am June 28th, 2018

The parliament unanimously adopted Finance Bill, 2018

The Finance Bill 2018 was passed in parliament on Wednesday with some changes, including reducing VAT on internet service, continuation of VAT exemption on computers, computer parts and increasing the prices of cigarettes.

Finance Minister AMA Muhith reduced the VAT on internet service to 5% from the proposed 15%.

The veteran minister exempted 5% additional VAT from assembling mobile phone sets.

He increased the prices of 10-stick low category cigarettes from Tk32 to Tk35 while that of high-category 10-stick cigarettes to Tk105 from Tk101.

He waived off the supplementary duty from petroleum jelly considering its wide range of use during winter by the rural and marginal people and removed the 10% supplementary duty on filament bulbs as energy bulbs are still costly for the poor and low income levels.

He withdrew 7% additional VAT on locally produced motorcycles.

Muhith increased the import duty of bulk Filled Milk Powder from 10% to 25% like the previous year to protect the local milk industries.

He, however, scrapped a proposal to increase import duty on Dry Mixed Ingredient, which is used as the healthy element to fill up the nutrition deficit, to 15% from 10%. The duty rate will be the same as the previous year.

He lowered the import duty from 15% to 10% on Unprinted PVC Sheet that is used for producing SIM and Smartcards.

The minister also reduced the regulatory duty of the 2000-3000cc double cabin pick-up from existing 25% to 20%.

Finance Minister AMA Muhith moved the bill which was passed by voice vote in the House.

Before the passage of the bill, the minister joined the general discussion on the proposed budget for fiscal year 2018-19.

He said the achievement of the present government towards implementing the budget of the outgoing fiscal year is laudable. "Especially, there has been significant development on utilization of foreign assistance."

Besides, project directors have been empowered to implement the budget from the next fiscal year, Muhith said.

About the education sector, the minister said allocations would be made from July 1 for enlistment of education in the MPO scheme after withholding the system for over the last nine years.

"At the same time, some allocations will be made in each area to change the MPO system while some additional allocations will also be made to make new classrooms demolishing the old and dilapidated education institutions," he added.

He expressed high hopes to implement the budget and achieve the target of 7.8% GDP growth in the coming financial year.

The bill was introduced to the House on June 7.

The House also accepted some amendments to the Finance Bill, 2018 brought by MP Shahiduzzaman Sarkar (Naogaon 2).