Film halls across Nepal suspended operations today as a protest against high government taxation.

The Nepal Motion Picture Association (NMPA) spearheaded the protest, citing concerns over the government’s imposition of a 36 percent tax encompassing film development fees, local taxes, and VAT.

The NMPA contends that film development fees and local taxes are impractical and has called for their abolition.

Additionally, the association demands that, following the implementation of VAT and corporate tax, no further taxes should be levied under different headings. They argue that the direct impact of increased VAT is adversely affecting the audience.

Before the establishment of the Film Development Board, Nepal boasted 450 film halls; however, the NMPA reveals that only 150 are currently operational. The association attributes this decline to the collapse of the film sector amid the coronavirus pandemic.

They argue that the industry cannot sustain itself under the burden of current government-imposed taxes.

Narendra Maharna, spokesperson for the NMPA, stated, “If our demands regarding high taxes are not met, we will resort to other means of protest.”