Abu Taher Bappa

2020-01-14 17:52:26 BdST

NBR allows EZ factories to import spare parts duty-free


The National Board of Revenue (NBR) has offered duty-free benefits on the import of spare parts by the factories located inside the Economic Zones (EZs) of the country.

The customs wing of the NBR issued a Statutory Regulatory Order (SRO), dated January 9, 2020, by amending the previous one.

Currently, the EZ factories are enjoying the duty-free benefit on import of capital machinery and construction materials under an SRO issued on July 1, 2015.

Officials said the NBR extended the duty benefit in response to proposals by the Bangladesh Economic Zones Authority (BEZA).

In a letter, the BEZA requested the NBR to offer the benefit for importing spare parts as mentioned in the incentive package for the EZ investors.

BEZA Executive Chairman (secretary) Paban Chowdhury hailed the NBR's order, informing that the incentive package was approved in September 2014 by the finance minister and on February 18 in 2015 by the BEZA governing body, headed by the Prime Minister.

"We had to wait for a long time to get the incentive package approved by the NBR," he said.

He said that the industries located in the export processing zones under the Bangladesh Export Processing Zones Authority (BEPZA) also get exemption from payment of customs duty, regulatory duty, supplementary duty and value-added tax on import of spare parts along with capital machinery.

The private EPZs also enjoy the same benefit, but the BEZA investors were not eligible for it, he added.

"It is high time to extend support for the apparel and leather sectors so that they can stay competitive in the international market," he added.

In 2015, the NBR waived all duties and taxes on import of capital machinery and construction materials by EZ industries, tagging some conditions that included mandatory registration of EZ factories with the value-added tax authority and obtaining BEZA approval and certification of the import list of machinery and construction materials.

However, some construction materials which are available in local market, including MS rod/bar, cement, pre-fabricated building, iron and steel sheet, are not eligible for the waiver.

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