Businesses are too greedy: Muhith

Published: March 11, 2018 19:54:44 | Updated: March 12, 2018 09:49:47

Finance Minister Abul Maal Abdul Muhith has termed Bangladesh’s businesses too greedy as 'they want to do business without taxes'.

The finance minister made the allegation following a meeting with the BCS Customs, VAT and Taxation Association at the Secretariat on Sunday.

Muhith was asked about seeking opinion from the FBCCI regarding a revision of the 2012 Value Added Tax, which did not come into effect for several years.

In reply, Muhith said, “They don’t want to pay. No-one wants to pay out of their own pocket. It is a bit worse in our country. They are very greedy. Everyone wants to do business tax-free.”

Businesses also expressed their dissatisfaction over recent move seeking FBCCI's opinion to several media outlets.

The government passed the VAT law in 2012, imposing a 15 per cent tax on all sales of goods.

Though it was to come into effect on July 1, 2016, fierce opposition from businesses forced the finance minister to announce that it would be pushed back to Jul 1, 2017.

But parts of the government came into conflict over the decision during budget deliberations, worried that an additional cost on the electorate would affect the upcoming election.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina then pushed the VAT implementation back another two years to 2019, forcing Muhith to back down.

Asked about the matter on Sunday, he said “There should be some high rates and some low rates. At the very least there should be two rates.”

According to bdnews24, he also discussed a 2 per cent discount after the electronic cash registers were introduced.

The government is also working on the customs law and plans to revise it before the next budget, Muhith said.

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