A 17 percent sales tax imposed on seeds will adversely influence the process of hybridization in the country, said an official on Tuesday.
While leading the first executive committee meeting of the newly established association, the Chairman of Pakistan Hi-Tech Hybrid Seed Association (PHHSA) Shahzad Ali Malik briefed the participants regarding the future action plan for the advocacy and advancement of the hybrid seed sector and allied technology.
“We now have a big responsibility to meet the aspiration of our members and align our goals with the national economic agenda,” Malik said.
He further said that there was a desperate need to make a friendly business environment through ease of doing business and a pleasant regulatory framework.
He worried that the 17 percent sales tax on the seed sector will lead to discouragement regarding the utilization of hybrid seed and reduce the yield of major crops like rice, wheat, cotton, maize, vegetable, and edible oil.
The imposition of 17 percent sales tax has resulted in unrest among all stakeholders particularly Crop Life Association, Rice Exporters Association of Pakistan and All Pakistan Textile Mills Association, Pakistan Hi-Tech Hybrid Seed Association, and Farmers Associations, and the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI), he said.
“It is unfortunate that the very first adventure for PHHSA soon after the grant of trade body license is to resist this sales tax by giving logical and convincing arguments to the decision-makers,” Malik added.
Moreover, the PHHSA is dedicated to accomplishing import substitution and local quality seeds production at reasonable prices and exploring export targets provided the government supports the sector by leading proper incentives schemes and regulatory reforms.
Malik insisted the government instantly withdraw the 17 percent sales tax on the seed sector which is the strength of agriculture. He continued that there is zero sales tax on seeds in India and similarly with Thailand and other seed exporting and importing countries.