Garment accessories makers have urged the government to provide them with equal budgetary facilities as proposed for the country's readymade garment (RMG) sector.
Bangladesh Garments Accessories and Packaging Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BGAPMEA) in a budget reaction on Saturday expressed frustration as their demands for reducing corporate tax, source tax and providing cash incentive have not been addressed in the proposed budget for fiscal year 2019-20.
"There is no reflection of our demands," the BGAPMEA president Abdul Kader Khan said in the statement. He added that the trade bodies like BGMEA, BKMEA and FBCCI backed our demands while the authorities concerned assured us of considering the demands.
"Though the export-import policy mentioned about providing equal facilities to both direct and deemed exporters, our corporate tax remained same at 35 per cent whereas the rate is 10, 12 and 15 per cent for the direct exporters," he said.
He requested the government to reduce the corporate tax to 10 to 12 per cent as proposed for the RMG sector, considering their contribution to the export trade.
Some 1,700 small and medium accessories and packaging makers are meeting the requirements for 30 to 35 types of such items needed for the RMG exporters while contributing to help save a huge amount of foreign currency, he explained.
The proposed budget announced an enhanced 1.0 per cent cash incentive for apparel items produced locally, the BGAPMEA president said.
"There is no announcement of cash incentive in the proposed budget or no assurance for the backward linkage industry of RMG," Mr Khan said, urging the government to provide equal incentive to the accessories and packaging makers.
The government has reduced the rate of source tax to 0.25 per cent for the export sectors from the proposed 1.0 per cent in the current fiscal year, following the demands of exporters, he said, adding that the only equal benefit that deemed exporters are also enjoying as given to the direct exporters.
The 0.25 per cent source tax will continue until June 30 and 1.0 per cent rate will be applicable from July 01.
The BGAPMEA urged the government to continue with the 0.25 per cent source tax for all the exporters.
The trade body also demanded of the government to provide equal budgetary facilities to the accessories and packaging makers as given to the direct exporters, taking the sub-sector's contribution to the export trade and economy.
The BGAPMEA also hailed the government for proposing duty-free import of safety equipments to ensure safe workplaces, increase social safety net, creating employment opportunities and easing the procedures to attract foreign direct investment.