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Global Go To Think Tank Index (GGTTI) 2020 launched                    111,75 Think Tanks across the world ranked in different categories.                SDPI is ranked 90th among “Top Think Tanks Worldwide (non-US)”.           SDPI stands 11th among Top Think Tanks in South & South East Asia & the Pacific (excluding India).            SDPI notches 33rd position in “Best New Idea or Paradigm Developed by A Think Tank” category.                SDPI remains 42nd in “Best Quality Assurance and Integrity Policies and Procedure” category.              SDPI stands 49th in “Think Tank to Watch in 2020”.            SDPI gets 52nd position among “Best Independent Think Tanks”.                           SDPI becomes 63rd in “Best Advocacy Campaign” category.                   SDPI secures 60th position in “Best Institutional Collaboration Involving Two or More Think Tanks” category.                       SDPI obtains 64th position in “Best Use of Media (Print & Electronic)” category.               SDPI gains 66th position in “Top Environment Policy Tink Tanks” category.                SDPI achieves 76th position in “Think Tanks With Best External Relations/Public Engagement Program” category.                    SDPI notches 99th position in “Top Social Policy Think Tanks”.            SDPI wins 140th position among “Top Domestic Economic Policy Think Tanks”.               SDPI is placed among special non-ranked category of Think Tanks – “Best Policy and Institutional Response to COVID-19”.                                            Owing to COVID-19 outbreak, SDPI staff is working from home from 9am to 5pm five days a week. All our staff members are available on phone, email and/or any other digital/electronic modes of communication during our usual official hours. You can also find all our work related to COVID-19 in orange entries in our publications section below.    The Sustainable Development Policy Institute (SDPI) is pleased to announce its Twenty-third Sustainable Development Conference (SDC) from 14 – 17 December 2020 in Islamabad, Pakistan. The overarching theme of this year’s Conference is Sustainable Development in the Times of COVID-19. Read more…       FOOD SECIRITY DASHBOARD: On 4th Nov, SDPI has shared the first prototype of Food Security Dashboard with Dr Moeed Yousaf, the Special Assistant to Prime Minister on  National Security and Economic Outreach in the presence of stakeholders, including Ministry of National Food Security and Research. Provincial and district authorities attended the event in person or through zoom. The dashboard will help the government monitor and regulate the supply chain of essential food commodities.

Staff Reporter

Dawn

Published Date: May 30, 2021

https://www.dawn.com/news/1626412/cigarette-output-figures-being-fudged-to-evade-tax-sdpi

Cigarette output figures being fudged to evade tax: SDPI

SDPI study titled “Regional Tobacco Tax Regime and Its Implications for Health” released on Saturday has said that the tobacco lobby in the country was powerful due to its connections in the power corridors that it has been demanding tax relaxations what they said to counter illicit trade.

The study found that the excise duty imposed on cigarettes in Pakistan remained the lowest as compared to other countries of the world, resulting in enormous increase in cigarettes consumption and revenue loss.

The SDPI study suspects that tobacco companies fudge cigarette figures to evade tax, it said, adding that while the consumption figures stand at a whopping 86.6 billion cigarettes per year, the official figures by the industry remain restricted to 55 billion only.

The SDPI said the rest was usually blamed on illicit trade, but the volume of illegal trade is not more than 9pc which is way less than the tall figure of 41pc being reported by companies.

The ruling elite should also keep distance from the tobacco industry, the study suggested, adding that it is very important because the industry would use it as a vehicle of their influence and interest.

The study suggested that a uniform tax system needs to be enforced at all levels so as to control tax evasion, urging the government to abolish the tier system that was providing tax evasion opportunities to tobacco companies. The single tiered system would help not only strengthen the revenue generation mechanism, but also the problem of illicit trade could be dealt with effectively.

In Pakistan, there are 22 million tobacco users, which includes 60pc adolescents and as a result 1.5 million cases of oral cancer are reported by Pakistan Medical Association on a yearly basis, the SDPI report noted.

The study added that the government should take strict measures to curtail immense influence of the tobacco lobby over all the legislative bodies and avoid giving tax benefits to multinational companies, it said.

The study said the laws against tobacco products including cigarettes, should be implemented in letter and spirit as well as without any discrimination.

The study said that apart from this, the statistically false claim of tobacco companies regarding the illicit trade of cigarettes should be rejected and no favours should be offered to them in taxation, it said.