Reconditioned vehicle dealers and importers have demanded removing tariff discrimination between the imports of reconditioned cars and the brand new ones.
Leaders of the Bangladesh Reconditioned Vehicles Importers and Dealers Association (Barvida) made the call at a virtual press conference on Wednesday.They said removing of discrimination will help the expansion of the market in Bangladesh.
The import of reconditioned cars declined significantly over the past few years in the country, they said, blaming the “a wide discrimination of duty” for this drop.
Barvida president Abdul Haque spoke in details about the current status of the reconditioned cars’ market in the country and its potentials.
Citing the size of domestic car market, he said in domestic market of Bangladesh, some 10,000 units to 20,000 unit cars are sold in a year.
The government, therefor, needs to take measures to expand the local car market before going for local production and exports, he said.
“In this case, it is very urgent to remove the discrimination of tariff structures on import of reconditioned cars and locally produced cars,” Abdul Haque emphasized.Barvida leader also said he has already placed the proposals on import and distribution of reconditioned vehicles in a pre-budget meeting with the senior officials of the National Board of Revenue (NBR).
In the meeting, the Barvida leaders demanded the government for increasing the depreciation benefit in import of cars by restructuring the supplementary duties on import of hybrid and fossil fuel driven cars and withdrawal of supplementary duty on import of microbuses.
Regarding an increase in depreciation benefit, the Barvida president mentioned that as per the import policy, enjoying five years’ depreciation benefit is a basic right by the importers.
He also proposed the government to adopt the automobile policy considering the technologies which can trigger the huge production and use of electrical cars in the local
markets in near future. “With the current perspective, the country needs a realistic, progressive and implementable policy so that a real automotive manufacturing industry is established which will also guarantee the protection of a stability in the long years’ business of import of reconditioned vehicles,” Abdul Haque said.
At the event, Barvida leaders said the government could collect a lot of revenue from the higher sales of cars among the rising middle income consumers at the time of the country’s graduation to a developing nation from the list of Least Developed Country (LDC).
They said as a trade body, the Barvida did not get any loan from the government sponsored stimulus package that has been giving over the last one year.
Also, the Chattogram port is yet to waive the port demurrage charge that was levied last year by the port authority on the importers even during the general public holidays, they said.
The charge was imposed despite application by the Barvida, although the port authority has exempted the tax on container transportation, they said.
“So, for the revival of the sector from the fallouts of the Covid-19, the Barvida wants to see the implementation of their placed proposals in the upcoming national budget for the fiscal year 2021-22,” said Barvida president.
Barvida Vice president Mohd. Saiful Islam (Samrat) and Secretary General Mohammad Shahidul Islam also spoke on the occasion.