The government has made a timely decision and exempted customs duty and general sales tax on import of solar panels for promoting alternative and renewable energy in Pakistan. Currently, the customs duty is applicable at five per cent and general sales tax (GST) at 17 per cent, on imports as well as finished solar panels. As per the decision local manufacturers will now import duty free inputs for local assembling of solar panels, while importers will also enjoy duty exemption on import of finished solar panels. This is excellent as it will bring manufacturers at par with importers of solar panels.

This directive will promote healthy competition in the domestic market. Also price will come down because of this tax waiver and lower price coupled with energy shortage will accelerate the import of solar panels. The decision is part of a policy of the government that power generation through renewable energy resources be encouraged to overcome the energy crisis in the country.

AMJAD KHAN,

Lahore, December 11.