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TataSky demands 5 yr tax holiday for DTH industry
November, 05th 2008

Direct-to-Home (DTH) television service provider TataSky today demanded a five-year tax holiday for the industry saying the sector has been under a "burdensome" taxation regime.

"This (DTH) industry is under a burdensome tax structure. Over and above the service tax, states also impose entertainment tax. The whole tax structure needs to be addressed," Tata Sky CEO and Managing Director Vikram Kaushik told reporters here.

Currently, the central government imposes 12 per cent service tax on the sector, while entertainment taxes differ from state to state.

Contending that taxation is a key issue for the growth of DTH industry in India, he said: "There should be a tax holiday for DTH industry for the next five years."

Kaushik said, India has already overtaken Japan as the largest DTH market in Asia in just five years and the sector has a lot of potential to grow faster and help digitisation of the television viewing in the country.

"The estimate is that DTH market in India is expected to multiply seven times to about 40 million subscribers by 2015, out of a total of 165 million pay TV households in India," he said.

Kaushik said DTH industry is mulling over taking up the issue together to press for the demand through its representative body DTH Operators Association of India (DOAI).

"Nothing concrete has started yet, but we may certainly do it (together)," he added.

Earlier in April this year, major players in the sector, Zee Group company Dish TV, Tata Sky, Reliance ADAG, Sun Direct and Bharti Telemedia had come together to form the umbrella body for the sector.

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