NBR asks CAAB to clip Best Air wings | The Daily Star
12:00 AM, January 15, 2009 / LAST MODIFIED: 12:00 AM, January 15, 2009

NBR asks CAAB to clip Best Air wings

Tk 2cr travel tax remains unpaid

The National Board of Revenue (NBR) has requested the Civil Aviation Authority of Bangladesh (CAAB) to cancel permission for all Best Air flights as the private airlines has failed to pay travel taxes amounting to Tk 2 crore.
In a letter sent to the CAAB on January 13, the NBR stated that Best Air had not paid travel tax for a long time.
“We have requested and sent letters to the Best Air authorities several times to pay the tax, but they did not pay heed to our request,” said an NBR official.
He said that travel tax is paid by the travellers, not the airliner. “It is the money given by the travellers, so there is no problem for the airlines to pay the money into the national exchequer.”
The official said they did not get any response from the CAAB regarding the letter. “We just sent the letter and hope that we will get the response at the beginning of next week.”
The NBR requested the CAAB to cancel all Best Air flights until the payment of the tax arrears.
The NBR official mentioned that the Best Air authorities however sent the list of the passengers who traveled on their flights.
Best Air now operates flights to Singapore and Malaysia. Their Dubai, Bangkok, Colombo and Male routes are suspended.
Best Air obtained licence in 2006 from CAAB to operate passenger service in the international and domestic sectors.
The NBR also has due travel taxes from Biman Bangladesh Airlines Limited and GMG Airlines.
Biman in November paid Tk 15 crore as travel tax while GMG paid Tk 5.5 million. These two airlines also have unpaid travel taxes.
“But they are paying travel taxes by installment, whereas Best Air did not pay anything,” the NBR official said about the tax dodging.
The revenue board got Tk 210.97 crore as travel tax from different airlines that operate flights in Bangladesh in the first six months of this fiscal. The amount was Tk 229.48 crore during the same period of the previous fiscal year.
The amount of travel tax increased by Tk 16 crore in the month of November compared to the same month of the last fiscal, while the amount in December increased by Tk 5 crore over the previous fiscal's same month.

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