ISLAMABAD: The government has markedly increased regulatory duties on import of essential food and non-food items and luxury goods, including up to 240% hike in import duties on mobile phones for additional Rs27 billion revenues in the new fiscal year.
The new regulatory duties came into force from Thursday – the first day of the new fiscal year, 2021-22, according to a notification issued by the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).
The government has also slapped 55% regulatory duty on import of potato, while retaining 60% regulatory duty on import of wheat and 25% on wheat flour despite being a food deficient country. The federal cabinet has largely waived off duties and taxes on import of wheat and sugar. Tribune reported.
But the FBR has retained wheat-related duties in the revised Statutory Regulatory Order (SRO), which has superseded a 2019 SRO. The FBR has issued an SRO to give effect to these new revenue measures. The final list of items that has been issued is broader than the initial items that the government had picked for increasing duties.
The regulatory duties are imposed over and above the customs duties and additional customs duties. Usually, the regulatory duties are used as a tool to discourage imports. The government has estimated Rs11 billion revenue from increase in duties on non-essential and luxury items and Rs16 billion on mobile phones.