June 16, 2009

Government to earn Tk 3000 cr. from telecom services this fiscal: BTRC

All-out govt support to mobile phone assembling factories: Commerce Minister

The government will provide all-out support in setting up mobile phone assembling factories here making the cell-phone cheaper to the poor people, Commerce Minister Faruq Khan has said. He said the government has proposed to impose 25 per cent duty on mobile phone sets to attract the local and foreign investors to set up mobile- phone assembling factories in Bangladesh instead of importing the mobile phone sets.

The Minister was speaking at the closing session of the Third Dhaka International Telecom Fair 2009 on Friday evening. Bangladesh Mobile Businessmen Association (BMBA) organized the four- day fair at city’s Bangladesh China Friendship Conference Centre. Chaired by FBCCI vice-president Abul Kashem Ahmed, the function was also addressed by BTRC chairman Brig Gen (retd) Zia Ahmed, former BTRC chairman Syed Margub Morshed and BMBA president Nizamuddin Jitu.

Speaking as special guest, BTRC chairman Brig Gen (retd) Zia Ahmed said the government expects to earn Tk 3,000 crore in revenue from the telecommunication services by the end of the current fiscal year. Terming the sector as booming, he said the government has a plan to reach internet facilities up to upazila level making the communication available at a poor-affordable rate.

BMBA president Nizamuddin Jitu apprehended that mobile phone importers might be tempted to illegal import if 25 percent import-duty is imposed on mobile-phone sets. “This is not a good sign for the country, as the government earned a huge amount of revenue from the sector,” he said. The BMBA president requested the government to withdraw the proposed duty for the next fiscal, considering the potential of the sector where thousands of people are directly and indirectly involved.

Syed Margub Morshed said the fair was a platform to promote the telecommunication related products of the companies like connection provider, handset, content provider and handset accessories provider to achieve the goal of building a ‘Digital Bangladesh’.


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