Coca: Cola, other beverage manufacturing companies appeal for end to unprecedented FED.

ISLAMABAD -- The aerated beverage industry has reported a drop of 35% : 40% in volume since the imposition of another 7% Federal Excise Duty [FED] in the February 2023 mini: budget. This has brought the total FED on the industry to an unsustainable 20%. This is an increment of over 50% from 13% to 20% and adversely impacts all the manufacturing companies down the chain - an expected job loss in the thousands. If these regulatory challenges persist, partners could be forced to consider factory shutdowns. These plant closures will exacerbate the loss of corporate and income revenue for the government - an estimated annual loss of PKR 6: 8 billion in terms of FED collection.

The Pakistan beverage industry is among the highest taxed in the world, with 20% FED above and beyond the average food and beverage industry levy. Yet, in the times of a forex shortage, the aerated beverage industry has led investment, bringing in an estimated $200 million to help improve the forex reserves of the country. However, due to their recent measures, the government has now dropped its revenue collections from this industry and stands negatively impacted. Based on existing data published in the 2022: 2023 Half Year Report of the State Bank Board of Directors, negative growth across several sectors has been recorded. Between H1 FY22 : H1 FY23 the beverage industry alone has...

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