The Bangladesh Chamber of Industries (BCI) has termed the proposed budget conducive to advancing domestic industry and the private sector.
BCI acting president Priti Chakraborty believes the implementation of targets set in the budget will accelerate the process of investment, industrialization, and employment.
"Under the circumstances, the size of the budget to implement the government's commitment to meet the needs and aspirations of the people is not unrealistic. However, it will be a challenge to achieve the desired revenue through business-friendly revenue management, good governance, proper monitoring, investment, and increase in production," said the BCI acting president in a press release on Friday.
However, the organisation fears that taxing private education will increase the cost of higher education. It also demanded the withdrawal of all taxes other than the 1% customs duty on imports of capital equipment for local industries.
The budget proposes a 10 year income tax exemption and the withdrawal of all taxes on equipment imports if private sector investments are made in hospital services outside four districts, including Dhaka. At the same time, it has proposed a 15% tax levy on private universities, medical colleges, and engineering colleges.
"Since these institutions are non-profit, we are seeking reconsideration of the proposed tax rate on private universities, medical colleges, and engineering colleges. If further taxes are imposed, the cost of higher education in the country will increase," said the BCI.
BCI acting president Priti Chakraborty is also the chairperson of Universal Medical College and Hospital.
The deficit in the proposed budget is estimated to be Tk2,14,681 crore. To fill this gap, the government will provide Tk1,13,453 crore from internal sources, of which Tk76,452 crore will be borrowed from the banking sector. The BCI thinks that if the government borrows so much from the banking sector, it will have a negative impact on the flow of credit to the private sector.
AHCAB expressed satisfaction over livestock budget
The Animal Health Companies Association of Bangladesh (AHCAB) has expressed satisfaction with the importance given to the livestock sector in the proposed budget.
With this budget proposal, animal husbandry will go far, said the organisation.
"No new taxes have been imposed on the country's poultry, dairy and fisheries sectors to ensure a safe supply of non-vegetarian food to our people in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. Instead, the budget proposal has given the opportunity to import some new products at a discounted rate. Consumers and the general public will benefit from this,' said AHCAB President Dr M Nazrul Islam, and Secretary General Mohammad Aftab Alam, in a press release.