VAT on super shop sales halvedJasim Uddin
The National Board of Revenue has reduced value-added tax on sales at super shops in the country by 50 per cent to help the sector grow and ease burden of VAT on consumers, officials of the revenue board said.
The NBR on January 27 issued a statutory regulatory order in this connection, they said.
From now on consumers will pay VAT at 2 per cent instead of 4 per cent on items bought from supermarkets, the SRO stated.
According to the SRO, super shops established on up to 12,000 square feet space will get the facility for sales of everyday essential products including vegetable, fish, meet, fruit, household goods and stationery items.
The super markets will have to maintain sales record using electronic cash register or point of sales software to avail the benefit, it said.
The products must be standard, hygienic and free of preservative, the SRO said.
Officials said that the revenue board had reduced the rate of VAT on super shops following repeated demand for the facility from the Bangladesh Super Market Owners Association.
They have been demanding to reduce VAT on sales of products saying that their sales have been falling over the years due to high VAT rate compared with that on sales at other big shops in the country.
Other shops normally pay a fixed VAT considering their sizes and areas commonly known as package VAT.
BSMOA general secretary Md Zakir Hossain hoped that sales at super shops would increase and they would get back their customers lost due to high cost of products at the supermarkets.
‘We have been facing severe problems including losing customers and uneven competition with other big and small shops due to high VAT rate as other shops pay package VAT which is low,’ he said.
He said, ‘Now our customers will return to superstores because of the reduction in VAT rate.’
‘The decision of the NBR will create a level playing field for us,’ he added.
Owners of the local supermarkets, however, had demanded size-based package VAT, withdrawing 4 per cent VAT on them.
According to the BSMOA, currently there are more than 100 outlets of 35 companies operating across the country and many others are planning to make new investment in the sector.
Agora, Shwapno and Meena Bazar are among the most famous chain shops operating in the country.
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