Telecom Projects Suffer due to Increased Taxation on Imports of Optical Fiber

The telecommunication sector has uttered the words that its fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) infrastructure projects across the country is in critical situation. Because a contemporary levy of regulatory duty has raised the imported optical fiber cost up to 107 percent. Telecom Projects Suffer due to Increased Taxation on Imports of Optical Fiber.

One of the world’s largest optical fiber manufacturers, Corning Inc, said in one of its circulars that the market demand and shortfall of the fiber is visible that the imposition of the Regulatory Duty will only aggravate the situation.

Telecom Projects Suffer due to Increased Taxation on Imports of Optical Fiber

The high count fiber cables which are the most commonly used for deploying fiber backbones are very heavy in weight, resultantly the transportation cost is also very high. The custom duties and other taxes are applied on the cumulative of cost of the component plus freight and it makes the premium of the delivered finished product extremely high.

The industry said in a letter written to Haroon Akhtar Khan, the federal minister on revenue:

“The imposition of 20 percent regulatory duty on the import of fiber optic cables …will decline the deployment of telecommunication infrastructure in Pakistan, The increasing worldwide demand and shortage of the fiber are already adding to its global prices by the global suppliers of the pre-form.”

The industry in letter also mentioned that Optical fiber is the basic requirement for FTTH projects in Pakistan. It is also an essential component of government’s Safe City Projects across many cities in Pakistan.

The industry also mentioned that the shortage or low standard of the fiber would badly effect the efforts of government to counter terrorism for a safer tomorrow. The industry urged the government to realize that high-speed optical fiber infrastructure was the only way to enable the digital economy of the country to compete with the world.

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