KPK Business Community Plead for Tax Relief on CPEC Projects

PESHAWAR, Nov 13 (APP): Speakers at a national dialogue here Friday underscored the need for relief in taxes and federal excise duties, introduction of PayPall as mode of payment and effective coordination among regulators to take full advantages of China Pakistan Economic Corridor Project (CPEC).

These recommendations were raised by different speakers and experts during a national dialogue titled “ Role of Parliament in promoting Investment, Trade and People to People exchange under the CPEC,” organized by National Assembly Secretariat, Islamabad here at local hotel.

Khyber Pakthunkhwa Chief Minister, Mahmood Khan, Speaker National Assembly, Asad Qaiser, Chief of Parliamentary Committee on CPEC, Sher Ali Arbab, member Parliamentary Committee on CPEC, Ms Nafeesa Inayatullah Khan Khattak, Special Assistant to the Chief Minister on Industries and Commerce, Abdul Karim Khan, Secretary Planning and Development KP, Amir Tareen, President Sarhad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (SCCI), Sherbaz Bilour, Chief Executive Officer KP Economic Zone Economic Development Management Company, Director Chinese Study Centre Dr Zahid Anwar and Central Asia Regional Economic Corporation (CAREC) Program Dr Ghulam Samad also addressed and spoke. Following inaugural session, three different groups were formed including trade activities, investment and industrial development, and tourism and people to people exchange under CPEC in KPK and forwarded various recommendations after extensive discussion by the experts of relevant departments and private sector.

Special Assistant to the Chief Minister on Industries and Commerce, Karim Khan who presided over the Investment and Industrial Development under CPEC in KP said that Rasakhai Special Economic Zone (RSEZ) was ready for inauguration and Prime Minister Imran Khan was likely to perform it ground breaking on November 21 in Nowshera district. RSEZ would be constructed on 1,000 acres land on three different phases under CPEC. The total area designated for industrial use is 702 acres out of which 159 kilometers area would be developed in Phase-I, 279 acres in phase-II and 264 acres in phase-III besides 76 kilometers for commercial purposes at RSEZ. He said new industrial policy has been framed and would be passed from KP Assembly soon. Six new economic zones would be established in KP to take full advantage of CPEC. A state-of-art marble city would be established in Mohmand tribal district and KP Govt was promoting ease of doing business to facilitate investors and traders, he said. Chief Executive KP Economic Zone Development Management Company, Javed Khattak said about 1,700 applications from foreign and domestic investors including 700 from oversees Pakistani were received for investment in RSEZ. Dr Ghulam Samad, Central Asia Regional Economic Program said there was a lot of potential for trade among Pakistan-Afghanistan and CARs and inclusion of the latter two in CPEC would take volume of trade among these countries to new heights. The speakers recommended IT based scientific approach, skilled manpower, reduction of taxes on imports of machinery and equipment, loans on easy terms and conditions to domestic investors and promotion of infant industries through commercial banks. Improving of value editions of marbles, gems and jewelry besides increasing capacity of technical educational institutions to impart markets based education to students besides strengthening institutional linkages with foreign countries institutes were recommended. The speakers also urged for allowing PayPall operations for online mode of payment besides taking SMEs along to take full advantage of CPEC.

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