Millers announce to shut mills for three-days

Millers announce to shut mills for three-days

F.P. Report

PESHAWAR: Flour millers in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa on Tuesday announced to shut mills for next three days from July 17 to 19 to protest against imposition of 17 per cent General Sale Tax (GST) on wheat bran.

Talking during an emergency meeting of the KP flour millers meeting here, the All Pakistan Flour Mills Association (APFMA) Central Chairman, Naeem Butt said that government was imposed 17 per cent General Sale Tax on wheat products and bran against its promise about not levying the food commodities.

He said that there had been no precedent of imposing GST on wheat or bran in the country in the past but it had been introduced on these products in the Finance Act 2019. He said it would directly hit all flour products and their prices would register increase.

Though, Mr Butt said the government had issued a circular today (Monday) about withdrawal of 17 per cent general sale tax on flour, maida and fine, which was highly laudable step of the government.

However, he said that the tax on wheat bran (choker) was yet not abolished. He claimed that the flour bags would register increase of Rs30 and Rs50 per 20 kilograms flour bag if the GST on bran was not withdrawn so that will subsequently affect the poor consumers.

Of the total 240 flour mills, he informed that only 100 flour mills were being fully functionalized in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. He said the flour millers are compelled to close down mills due to unwise policies of the government.

He urged the Prime Minister Imran Khan and relevant authorities to issue order for withdrawal of 17 per cent GST on wheat bran while keeping in view present increasing ‘price-hike’ in the country.

Mr Butt said that the flour millers are unanimous to strong protest against the imposition of GST on wheat bran and decided to shut their mills for next three day from July 17 to 19, which will create shortages of flour in open market. He informed that the APFMA general body meeting has been called on July 20, in which the future course of action will be decided in the meeting.

Earlier, an emergency meeting of the All Pakistan Flour Mills Association Khyber Pakhtunhwa chapter was held here under chairmanship of the association central president Naeem But and provincial chairman Mohammad Tariq, which also attended by flour millers in a large number.

The meeting unanimously decided to shut flour mills for next three days from July 17 to 19 against the imposition of GST on wheat bran. It was pertinent to mention here that All Pakistan Flour Mills Association (PFMA) announced to go on a three-day strike from July 17, 2019, to register their protest on imposition of general sales tax (GST) on wheat products and bran.

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