In order to curb imports and increase exports for the country, the government is planning to introduce changes in Finance Act 2018 which could uplift the current economic situation of Pakistan.
The earlier government imposed import tax up to Rs.5000 on mobile phones in budget 2018-19 W.E.F July 1, 2018, in the Finance Act 2018. The purpose of this amendment in the Finance Act 2018 was to strangle growing imports and add additional revenue to the national exchequer in form of taxes. Mobile phone imports surged by 19.44 percent during the fiscal year 2017-18 to $847.654 million as compared to the previous fiscal year 2016-17 which was recorded at $709.690 million.
The new amendment in the Finance Act 2018 has imposed even greater levies on imported mobile phones, as mentioned below;
- Rs10,000 or less value of mobile phone (including taxes and duties) will have Zero levy
- More than Rs10,000 and less than Rs40,000 value of the phone (including taxes and duties) has Rs1000 levy per handset
- Between the value of Rs40,000 and Rs80,000 of a handset (including taxes and duties) Rs3000 levy would be charged
- If the handset value is more than Rs80,000 (including taxes and duties) Rs5000 per handset levy would be charged
The Finance Act 2018 also imposes a levy of Regulatory Duty (RD) at the rate of Rs175 per handset on completely knocked down (CKD) and Semi-Knocked down (SKD) kits of mobile phones.
The current government is planning to introduce a new budget focusing on generating more revenues, curb imports, increase import, minimize the trade deficit and improve budget deficit by introducing taxes and regulatory duties on non-essential items.
The commerce ministry has reportedly prepared a report, in which it listed import items that are non-essential, the government is planning to restrict the imports of non-essential items including mobile phones, however, this move according to experts could increase the mobile prices in Pakistan and open doors for mobile smuggling.