ISLAMABAD: FBR mulls taking off most of Rs500b tax dispensation

The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has contrived to pack off most of the Rs 500 billion tax exemptions from the next financial year 2014-15, which is also going to be a difficult year for those potential taxpayers who have not held the national tax number and likewise those who hold an NTN but never file their returns.


Shahid Hussain Asad, Member (Inland Revenue) Policy, FBR, said this while briefing the group of visiting officers currently attending Mid-Career Management Course (MCMC).

A group of 17th Mid Career Management Course has visited FBR here on Tuesday, headed by Acting Director General/ Chief Instructor, National Institute of Management, Quetta Nazar Mohammad Kakar.
Ms. Riffat Shaheen Qazi, Member FATE, FBR, welcomed the visiting officers and briefly told them about the mandate, working and public presentation of the FBR.

She said FBR is the sole institution responsible for resource mobilization and revenue generation faced a hard job of collecting tax revenue, only the strenuous and dedicated endeavors of the officers and workforce of FBR were helping broaden the tax network.

Shahid Hussain Asad, Member (Inland Revenue) Policy, FBR, said, “We have long relied on the universal self assessment scheme, considering in the income patterns and subsequent tax returns lodged by the taxpayers, but now is the time to judge the value of these returns along the basis of expenditure incurred by the citizenry in upholding their social position and lifestyle”.

Before responding to questions from the visiting officers, Member (IR) Policy, FBR, Shahid Hussain Asad said FBR had formulated a strategy to break after the tax-invaders by using information held from their transactions in the real estate sector, purchase of vehicles, foreign travels and also by accessing, in the long run, their bank accounts to assess the extent of tax avoidance and tax dodging.

To a custom-built, he said FBR had been capable to garner Rs 1743 billion revenue by the end of April and efforts were about to fill the annual revenue collection target of Rs 2345 billion.

‘We are convinced we would be able to see the target as most of the big collections are produced towards the close of the fiscal year,” he stated

Later, Bakhtiar Muhammad, Chief Facilitation & Taxpayer Education (FATE), FBR, gave a detailed presentation on the working and performance of FBR in broadening the tax net and enhancing the tax-to-GDP ratio.

He said the percentage of people filing their tax returns in Pakistan’s population was only 1.6 per cent as compared to 4.7 per cent in India, 16.5 per cent in Argentina, 58 per cent in France and an impressive 80 per cent in Canada.

“The bearing of such a large number oftaxpayingg individuals in these countries has directly played a essential part in keeping their economies besides providing a financial cushion to their governments to divert massive funds to the maturation of the social sector,” he stated

Dr Muhammad Zubair, Chief International Customs FBR, also dealt with the officers various loopholes and weaknesses in the current tax scheme and what steps were taken to construct the scheme more robust.

He reasoned that for a robust taxation system, compliant taxpayers, independent tax authority, simplified tax laws & procedures and a vibrant tax machinery are all important.

Likewise, a reasonable tax system should impose similar tax burdens on similarly situated individuals while tax burdens should also be relative to an individual’s ability to pay tax, he added.

Nazar Mohammad Kakar, Acting Director General/ Chief Instructor, National Institute of Management, Quetta thanked FBR for hosting the said inland study tour.


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