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E-commerce association seeks tax holiday extension in upcoming budget

  • Published at 10:42 pm February 18th, 2019
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Leaders of e-Commerce Association of Bangladesh (e-CAB), led by its president Shomi Kaiser, address the media at a press conference at Jatiya Press Club on Monday, February 18, 2019 SYED ZAKIR HOSSAIN/Dhaka Tribune

The e-commerce entrepreneurs also hailed the government for the Digital Commerce Policy Guide 2018, terming it as a safeguard for the e-commerce business community

A platform of the country’s emerging e-commerce owners has demanded extension of tax holiday for the sector in the next budget. 

The e-Commerce Association of Bangladesh (e-CAB) also urged the government to set income tax rate between 0.1% and 0.3% for the sector, and to declare it as a thriving sector.

Shomi Kaiser, president of e-CAB, made the appeal at a press conference at the National Press Club in Dhaka on Monday. 

She also focused on the Digital Commerce Policy Gazette 2019, calling it a milestone.  

“To make the e-commerce business popular among people, the government should continue  tax exemption for e-commerce enterprises in the upcoming budget of 2019-20 fiscal year,” Shomi said.

The e-commerce entrepreneurs also hailed the government for the Digital Commerce Policy Guide 2018, terming it as a safeguard for the e-commerce business community.

Among others, General Secretary of e-CAB Abdul Wahed Tomal and Director General of Bangladesh Post Office Sushanta Kumar Mandal were present at the press conference.  

Abdul Wahed Tomal said, "We propose to include 'e-commerce and online shopping' under IT enabled services (ITES) and exclude income tax for those categorized under the category."

"It is indeed an appreciable initiative of the government to publish the policy as gazette in the shortest time. It will be considered as a milestone for e-industrialization of the country," said Tomal.

He added that e-commerce is yet to gain public confidence, despite its infrastructural development.

He also said that the companies that are operating as an e-commerce company and those that are still incurring losses, the minimum tax should be 0.1% of their total income, while those that announce profits should pay a minimum of 0.3% in taxes. As a result, it will entice more entrepreneurs into the sector.

Other proposals by e-CAB include e-commerce delivery services, payment services, cross-border e-commerce, entrepreneurship training, delivery of e-commerce services at rural level, consumer rights, and several other issues.

E-CAB executive committee members and related e-commerce entrepreneurs were also present at the event.