The industrialists have expressed concern over collection of property tax from two industrial estates in Peshawar, terming it double taxation which should be abolished immediately.

During a meeting on Tuesday, they urged the provincial government to review its decision regarding fixation of minimum wage for industrial workers and revise it as per available resources and capacity in the province.

The industrialists also expressed concern over the whopping increase in ground rent in industrial estates by Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa Economic Zones Development and Management Company (KPEZD&MC). They said that the area was not used for commercial purpose rather for production activities, so the increase should be revised at optimal level.

The participants of the meeting said that the incentives announced by the provincial government in the previous Industrial Policy 2016 should be given to industries.

The industrialists condemned collection of heavy taxes by the town municipality despite having stickers and companies’ names on vehicles, calling it as completely unjust and unfair, and sough immediate halt to collection of such illegal taxes forthwith.

They stressed the need for maintaining old tubewells and construction of new tubewells in industrial estates and existing tubewells should be converted to solar systems. They also demanded renewal lease of commercial plazas and payment of outstanding dues against different relevant government departments.

Also present in the meeting, Adviser to CM Abdul Karim assured the businessmen that the issue of property tax would be raised with the provincial excise and taxation department. He promised the industrialists would be consulted regarding the increase in minimum wage of industrial workers and the current increase in wage of Rs21,000 would be revised.

Furthermore, he assured that the issues pertaining to collection of heavy taxes by town municipality, property tax and others would be addressed amicably.

Published in The Express Tribune, August 25th, 2021.

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