Minister for Economic Affairs Hammad Azhar on Monday told the National Assembly that the marble products produced and then sold in former federally and provincially administered tribal areas were exempted from taxes.
He was responding to a Calling Attention Notice of members regarding imposition of taxes on marble processing units in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa resulting into their closure.
He said 17 percent sales tax was imposed at the retail stage on the marble products made in tribal areas but later sold in other parts of the country.
MNA Ehsan Ullah Tiwana told the house said the imposition of taxes forced the industrialists to shift to tax exempted areas of former federally and provincially administered tribal areas leaving thousands of workers jobless in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
Another mover of the notice, MNA Ali Nawaz Awan said that 90 percent of the marble mines were located in tribal areas while 75 percent of the processing was also done there and 25 percent processing took place in areas of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.
He said marble processing units had closed down in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa because of the disparity in taxes.
He urged that level playing field should be provided to the marble businesses whether operating in the tribal areas or other districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.