News Desk, Dhaka::
Leaders of trade bodies have termed the proposed budget as an inclusive one, expressing hope that the proposals, if implemented, may revitalise the economy.
In their instant reactions to the budget proposed on Thursday, they also emphasised the need for taking steps to implement the budget and increasing revenue.
The business leaders urged the government to make a special focus on ways and means to overcome the effects of the Covid-19 in the coming days.
FBCCI President: Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industries (FBCCI) President Md Jashim Uddin has termed the size of the budget realistic in view of the government’s pledges.
He identified governance, proper monitoring, and revenue collection as the key challenges in implementing the budget.
“There should be specific directives and strategies to ensure efficiency, transparency, and accountability in budget implementation,” the business leader said.
He, however, added, “We demanded removal of 5.0 per cent advance income tax (AIT) on businesses that increases operating cost as the adjustment or refund is not made in time.”
Suggesting an integrated and automated revenue collection system, he, however, regretted that the government has not increased the target of revenue collection to any significant proportion.
On how to meet the budget deficit, the FBCCI president recommended that the government should emphasise taking a higher amount of low-interest loans from foreign sources.
President of Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) Nihad Kabir termed the proposed outlay as courageous in view of the current circumstances.
She said none is sure whether or not there will be another wave of the pandemic. “It will take time to recover the speed at which the economy was growing,” she said.
Dwelling on the steps taken to revitalise the industry by proposing a reduction in tax, as demanded by the business community, she said, “I consider this to be a very creative budget.”
Ms Kabir pointed out that the social safety net has been widened and this will help the citizens who have really suffered to recover and begin to return to normal life.
Referring to failure to implement the budget, she underscored the need for steps for implementation of the budget and for ensuring quality implementation.
“The taxes lowered in the proposed budget in practice have to be given a fact,” she insisted.
Dhaka Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DCCI) President Rizwan Rahman has described the proposed outlay as an inclusive budget for economic recovery.
“(The) budget is by and large inclusive and pro-people,” he said.
He thanked the government for reducing corporate tax both for listed and non-listed companies. “It will help boost investment.”
Mr Rahman suggested reducing corporate tax at a ‘progressive’ rate of 2.5 per cent in fiscal year (FY) 2022-23 and FY 2023-24.
He also called for ensuring accessible stimulus packages for all cottage, micro, small and medium enterprises (CMSMEs).
The DCCI President urged the government to widen tax net, strengthen collection of due taxes, tax collection at the district level, and ensure tax automation for more revenue collection. “Mandatory e-TIN for national savings, cooperatives, and postal savings will increase tax.”
“When the world economy is devastated by Covid-19 pandemic… the proposed budget has set 7.2 per cent growth and 5.3 per cent inflation target. The progressive and attainable growth target has created hope among us,” he said.
The DCCI leader appreciated the steps for raising allocation to contain pandemic effects, providing incentives and subsidy, rehabilitating agriculture, expanding social safety net, and taking steps for employment generation.
He praised the government for accepting recommendations like lowering income tax and value-added tax, lessening advanced tax on import raw materials.