Thursday, June 07, 2012 -
Internet service providers (ISPs) in Tajikistan are fighting a losing battle with state authorities over a new tax on internet usage which they say will hit growth of the sector.
The Tax Committee has just ruled that from July 1 it will begin to enforce a 3 percent excise tax the ISPs have called “illegal”, Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty (RFE/RL) reported.
The tax came into effect on 1 January 2011, but the Association of Internet Service Providers forced an official review of the hike.
However, a Dushanbe judge has now ordered that ISPs will not only have to comply with the tax rules but that the charges are retroactive to January 2011.
"Some providers have already revised their prices, some have just started to do that," the Asia-Plus news agency reported a representative from the service providers organization as saying.
"On average, prices for internet services will raise by 4 percent."
The impoverished Central Asian nation has 2.1 million internet users among a population of 7.3 million people, according to official statistics.