Budget disappoints tech businesses

Staff Correspondent

17 June, 2019 12:00 AM printer

Technology business leaders on Sunday urged the government to withdraw additional taxes on digital trading proposed in the new budget to pave the way for developing the knowledge-based economy.

Businesses also expressed their concern on increased tax on computer hardware while addressing a post budget press conference in the capital yesterday.

Bangladesh Association of Software and Information Services (BASIS), Bangladesh Computer Samity, Internet Service Providers Association of Bangladesh (ISPAB) and Bangladesh Association of Call Center and Outsourcing (BACCO) jointly organised the meeting at Pan Pacific Sonargaon to review the financial proposal for technology sector.

BASIS President Syed Alams Kabir, BCS President Shahid-UL-Munir, ISPAB President MA Hakim, BACCO Secretary General Towhid Hossain were present at the media brief.

BASIS President Syed Alams Kabir highlighted the increased allocation for development of technology sector and fixed funding for promoting start-up. He, however, expressed his concern over the 7.5 percent tax for digital commerce which has been flourishing in last couple of years as a new sector.

He urged the government to re-consider the additional tax on digital trading for next five years in the line with Digital Bangladesh vision.

The chief of software sector trade body also expressed disappointment as the government has been avoiding the sector’s demand for fixed allocation of Tk 200 crore for the information technology enabled services (ITes). Besides, the government imposed 5 percent tax on ITeS sector which is a big hindrance for the newly emerged sector, according to Almas. Hardware sector association BCS President Shahid-UL-Munir shared his concern with the proposed advance income tax on hardware import.

Besides, on the sale or distribution of imported computer and computer related hardware’s tax has been increased up to 7.5 percent from 5 percent which will discourage the businesses, according to Munir.