The Punjab Government has recently imposed a new tax in the province on entertainment. This is the entertainment tax that has resulted in cinema ticket prices increase for people.
A notice has been issued by the Punjab Excise and Taxation department to cinema owners that impose a 65% duty. This applies to admission tickets that have led to cinema ticket prices increase from Rs 500 to Rs 825. However, it depends on the owners as to how they want to handle this tax. The Cinema Owners Association just removed their self-imposed ban on Indian movies.
This hurt them more than the general public while the government also waived the tax since 2006. This was done to improve the situation of cinemas in this country through investment and attraction. The efforts bore fruit as Punjab now has about 125 cinemas in comparison to just 20 to 25 in 2006. If you talk about revenues, Punjab remains at the top while Karachi comes at the second position.
The new notification
But according to the new notification, Punjab Government has imposed this tax under the Entertainment Duty Act 1958. As a result new investment in this sector might drop according to the Pakistan Film Exhibitors Association, Zohair Lashari. He adds that all fresh investments worth billions shall be stalled now. Hence, he hopes that the Punjab Chief Minister intervenes in order to solve the issue.
Ayesha Ghaus Pasha is the Punjab Government’s Finance Minister who says that they do not want to cause any undue harm to the industry. They just want to collect taxes from sectors that are capable of paying them for the benefit of the country. Thus, the price increase is confirmed while people visiting cinemas shall surely decrease in Punjab now.