Staff Report ISB: The Government of Punjab has imposed a heavy 19.5% tax on 3G and 4G internet services. The taxes are applicable on 2Mbps and the broadband utility bills exceeding Rs.1500/month.
The imposition of this tax will directly affect 56% of population of Pakistan that is internet consumer. The broadband industry response on this tax is vigorously unpleasant. A high amplitude wave of agony has meandered through the telecom service industry and is expected to cause copious loss to them as well as the consumers. Not only existing telecom companies are concerned about it but also the prospective investors have been shaken. According to a leading telecom company official, “This tax is a manifestation of uncooked priorities of government and it will seriously harm major prospects of e-commerce, m-banking, entrepreneurship and almost entire economy for meeting budgetary deficits.”
It is fairly expected that telecom industry, stakeholders, and consumers are seriously shocked at this tax imposition and this fret may ignite a movement to pressurize government to revisit the policy and reverse the tax imposition to regain the trust of investors.