Entrepreneurs blame DDC

Biratnagar, September 12:

Leather entrepreneurs of eastern region have protested against the local tax, being collected by District Development Committee (DDC). The government had decided not to collect DDC tax, to encourage local leather industries. But the DDC continues to collect tax continuously. Entrepreneurs say the collection is totally unnatural and illegal, they said. According to Hasan Ansari, managing director of Asian Leather Industry, the DDC is collecting about 10 to 15 per cent of tax on leather. He blamed that, with the agreement between local development officials and contractors, DDC is collecting illegal taxes. He added, “We showed them the agreement paper of Local Development Ministry about not collecting such taxes but they have been turning a deaf ear.”

The government has decided not to collect tax from the export-oriented industries but DDCs in Jhapa, Morang, Sunsari, Saptari and Siraha are collecting local taxes. President Sanjay Giri of Nepal Leather Association (NLA) said local leather entrepreneurs have united against the collection of illegal tax by DDCs. He said, “Out of five leather industries in the eastern region, four are running right now.” Asian Leather, Nepal Trading Industry, Universal Leather and United Trading Industry are running whereas Duhabi-based Pioneer Leather Industry has already shut down. Only 12 leather industries are running in the nation.

Meanwhile, NLA has also demanded making essential chemicals tax-free, which is charged 15 per cent.