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M/s Pakistan Electronics Manufacturers Association (PEMA) and manufacturers/assemblers of Plasma Display Panel (PDP) and Liquid Crystal Display Panel (LCD) represented the government that they are facing tough competition because of smuggling of said items. They claimed that smuggled television sets are available at prices 28% to 41% cheaper than locally produced/assembled LCD/PDP. This price difference rendered the local assembling/manufacturing of LCD/PDP uncompetitive in the domestic market. They proposed to abolish customs duty on the SKD of the LCD and Plasma TVs together with application of strict administrative measures.
The Government examined the representations with a view that administrative measures alone cannot address to curb the smuggling and there is a need to revisit the existing tariff regime for this industry. Accordingly, in order to boost up the competitiveness of the domestic manufacturing/assembling of LCD/PDP, the matter was taken up by the Economic Coordination Committee (ECC) of the Cabinet in its meeting held on 22nd January, 2008 and the ECC decided to exempt whole of the duty on CKD kits and reduce the duty on LCD/PDP in SKD kits and CBU from 5% and 20% from exiting 10% and 25%, respectively, for a period of one year and during this period the National Tariff Commission (NTC) will carry out examination of the concessionary tariff for LCD/PDP and will submit its recommendations for continuance or otherwise of the tariff after one year.
In order to give effect to the ECC's said decision two amending Notifications No. SRO 267(1)/2008 dated 10th March, 2008 and SRO 268(1)2008 dated 10th March, 2008 have been issued. Thereby, the CKD kits, SKD kits for LCD and PDP shall be importable at the rate of duty at 0% and 5%, respectively, for the period from 10th March, 2008 to 9th March, 2009 under SRO 565(1)/2006 dated 5-6-2006 and LCD/PDP in CBU from shall be importable at the rate of duty at 20% under SRO 567(1)/2006 dated 5-6-2006 for the said period.