Govt may revise some tax proposals
The government will increase the tax-free income limit of an individual taxpayer to Tk 2 lakh from Tk 1.80 lakh in the proposed budget for the next fiscal year.
Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina in her concluding speech on the budget in parliament may make an announcement to this effect.
Changes may also be made to the proposed taxes on mobile phone bills, bank interest and export earnings, officials of the National Board of Revenue said.
In the proposed budget for the next fiscal year, the government raised tax at source on export receipts to 1.2 percent from 0.6 percent. The rate may be revised to 0.8 percent in the face of opposition from businessmen.
The government has also proposed a 2 percent tax deduction on post-paid and pre-paid mobile phone bills, which may be withdrawn completely.
Finance Minister AMA Muhith in his budget speech proposed raising the minimum individual tax to Tk 3,000 from Tk 2,000, considering the increase in growth and per capita income.
Economists, civil society and the business community criticised the decision of raising the minimum tax when the tax free income of any individual taxpayer remained unchanged.
They cited the Bangladesh Bureau of Statistics according to which the average inflation rose to 10.20 percent in May. Except for rice, the prices of all other food and non-food items have increased.
House rent and transport cost have substantially increased in the urban areas. Against this backdrop, a demand has been raised from all quarters for increasing the ceiling of tax-free income.
The tax-free income limit for female taxpayers and physically challenged individuals may also be upped from the proposed Tk 2 lakh and Tk 2.5 lakh, a finance ministry official said.
The finance minister is today expected to announce in his concluding speech on the budget a number of other changes to the proposed taxes in the budget.
Regarding the whitening of illegal money, the government will place some conditions. The source has to be mentioned and people will be asked to invest the money in productive sectors.