Junta imposes K20,000 tax on mobile SIM cards, 15% tax on internet use – Eurasia Review

The Myanmar State Administration Council (SAC) announced on January 6 that a business tax of K20,000 will be levied on the purchase of SIM cards for mobile phones.

The regime has also said it will impose a 15% trade tax on Internet service income, with the changes in the 2021 Union Tax Law Amendment Act.

Other tax levies have been eased or suspended to deal with businesses affected by the Covid-19 pandemic, but higher taxes will be levied on growing internet use, state newspapers say.

Junta-controlled media said the tax increase would not only increase the country’s income, but could also reduce “the effects triggered by the extreme use of internet services on people’s employment and physical and mental suffering. students of the new generation “.

A local resident of Sittwe said the plan to add a new commercial tax on the use of internet services could not be accepted amid the current economic crisis, which has been fueled by the Covid-19 pandemic and the military coup of February 1.

“More and more people are now using email to send documents. In the meantime, with the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, I couldn’t communicate with people and had to work online. So if the junta increases the price of Internet usage, people will be in trouble, ”added the Sittwe resident.

Likewise, U Ko Ni, a resident of Sittwe who runs a mobile phone company, pointed out that the new tax would be particularly harsh on low-income users.

“This is not a good sign. If the price of the Internet increases, the base will not be able to use it,” he said.

The law amending the Union tax law 2021, signed on Thursday by the head of the junta and president of the SAC, senior general Min Aung Hlaing, will enter into force from January 8, 2022 to March 31, 2022.

Casey J. Nelson