Lahore - The prices of daily use items and edible products, including shoes, clothes, cosmetics, electronics products, auto spare parts and mobil oil, have not been affected by the federal budget 2018-19. However, it is relevant to mention here that their rates are already going up due to weakening of rupee against dollar.

Duties and taxes have been increased in the budget on construction related items like steel and cement. Moreover, tax ratio has also been increased on tobacco products but they will be implemented in the next fiscal year. Market sources said that the prices of these items will be increased before the implementation of new taxes.

They said that regulatory duties on the import of steel bars, sanitary wares and tiles have not been withdrawn despite repeated requests by the trade and industry to the government. They said that manufacturers of these materials are wrongly interpreting regulatory duties for their own interests by increasing rates on the pretext of the imposition of RD.

Steel manufacturers are considering to increase the rate of steel bars from Rs68,000 per ton to Rs98,000 per ton after imposition of the regulatory dutyt. Same is the case with cement companies, as the government has raised excise duty by Rs15 per 50 kg bag of cement, leading to rise in cost of construction.