Asad Umar presents Amendments to Federal Budget in National Assembly

Finance Minister Asad Umar on Tuesday presented the proposed amendments to the Federal Budget in the National Assembly, after the Federal Cabinet approved the amendments earlier in the day.

The Minister informed the National Assembly that in order to cut back on the historic high trade deficit and generate revenue for the government, it has resolved to increase duties on various luxury items via amendments in the Customs Act.

He said duties on cars of over 1800 CC will now be applied at the rate of 20 percent, while duties on items like expensive imported mobile phones, and cigarettes is going also going to be increased.

The minister also said that the export industry is being given a relief worth Rs 500 billion. A Rs 44 billion benefit for the textile industry in Punjab was also announced by the minister, who said his government would also work towards creating benefits for the zero-rated sectors in the government's electricity measures.

According to the Minister, the government will be raising Rs 183 billion in additional revenue, half of which would be coming through improved administrative procedures that utilise technology to plug leakages in the system. He informed the Assembly that the Federal Board of Revenue has already accepted this challenge.

The Minister informed the National Assembly that a Health Card System would be introduced all across Pakistan which would provide medicine to the masses on lower prices, providing Rs 540,000 per family through the Sehat Insaf Card for doctors' fees and medicines in Fata and Islamabad.

He also announced an increase of 10 percent in the pensions being paid to employees of Old Age Benefit Institute. In addition, he informed the release of Rs 4.5 billion for the completion of housing scheme for the underprivileged.

He further said that the increase in Petroleum Development Levy is being taken back in order to provide releif to the poor segement of the society.

Taxation

With respect to the tax exemption slabs introduced by the prior government, Asad Umar said that the government has resolved to maintain those slabs up to Rs 2.4 million annual income. However, rate of tax has been increased up to 25 percent for salary persons and 29 percent for business individuals from 15 percent before, he added.

No taxes would be applied on those earning less than Rs 400,000, while the taxes to be charged on those earning between Rs 400,000 and Rs 800,000 are Rs 1,000.

Where the taxable income exceeds Rs 800,000 but does not exceed Rs 1,200,000, a tax of Rs 2,000 would be charged. Where the taxable income exceeds Rs 1,200,000 but does not exceed Rs 2,400,000, a tax rate of 5 percent of the amount exceeding Rs 1,200,000 has been maintained.

Where the taxable income exceeds Rs 2.4 million but does not exceed Rs 3 million, a tax of Rs 60,000 in addition to 15 percent of the amount exceeding Rs 2.4 million will be charged.

Where the taxable income stands between Rs 3-4 million, a tax of Rs 150,000 in addition to 20 percent of the amount exceeding Rs 3 million will be charged to the taxpayer.

Where the taxable income stands between Rs 4-5 million, a tax of Rs 350,000 in addition to 25 percent of the amount exceeding Rs 4 million will be charged.

Where the taxable income exceeds Rs 5 million, a tax of Rs 600,000 in addition to 29 percent of the amount exceeding Rs 5 million will be charged.

Finance Minister also informed that the withholding tax rate of 0.4 percent for non filers while making non-cash transactions upto Rs 50,000 per day, has been restored to 0.6 percent. In addition, he also said that that in the last budget a provision was introduced under which non-filers could not purchase immovable property and motor vehicles. “This provision has been abolished on the demand of expatriate Pakistanis,” he added.

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Posted on: 2018-09-18T12:57:00+05:00

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