Newspaper industry may get tax exemptions
By Khalid Mustafa
ISLAMABAD: The government is all set to provide relief to the newspaper industry by announcing certain tax exemptions in the budget on Saturday.
According to one of the budget-makers, the government will substantially increase the allocation for advertisements of federal ministries and their attached departments, which will help the newspaper industry to stand on its feet.
The official said that the advertisement budget is not sufficient and has not been increased for years, but the government is now prepared to provide more funds for that account.
“There is a suggestion that a substantial amount equal to 1 per cent of gross domestic product should be allocated for a bailout package for the newspaper industry. Under the package, the government will also extend soft loans to the industry for importing machinery and other related items,” he said.
The government also seems inclined to allow the newspaper industry to import second hand printing machine on either zero customs duty or under concession. In addition, the government is also considering zero-rating special excise duty on the value of goods imported for the print industry.
The government is also examining a proposal to waive general sales tax on the import of newsprint and other raw material. Last year, that proposal was deferred. If allowed the import of newsprint inks, plates and films will be exempted from general sales tax and central excise duty as a bailout package.
Moreover, exemption from withholding tax on advertisement income is also under consideration. The government is also likely to exempt goods related to the print industry from 1 per cent duty at the import stage.
Source: The News