“There will be no raid on business premises and the show cause notices already issued in this respect will be withdrawn” this was stated by Dr. Jehanzaib Khan, Chairman Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) while addressing at a large gathering of business community at Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI).
He stated that in order to coordinate and interact with the business community he would visit Karachi every month for two days. He said that FBR was using NADRA data of those non filers who made frequent visits, purchased luxury cars and paying hefty education fee of their children, to identify new tax payers for broadening of tax base as the present tax to GDP ratio i.e. 11.2 percent of GDP, is not sufficient to make Pakistan a prosperous and welfare oriented state. He added that it would help us in entering into next generation of tax collection for the country.
Dr. Jehanzaib Khan who was accompanied by FBR team has announced to formulate a joint committee of FBR officials and FPCCI members to facilitate business community in resolving long outstanding and day to day issue instantly. He also announced a focal person in FBR to coordinate with Chairman FBR and FPCCI and take stock of issues and problems of trade and industry which may arisen due to misuse of discretionary powers of FBR officials and harassing businessmen. He disclosed that two third of the refunds would be paid through promissory notes and the rest would be paid through cash refunds system and added that payment of total refunds in one go would create revenue shortfall. He said that those who have filed their income tax return after due date and time would be accommodated as filers and would not be classified as non-filer. He said that tax policy was being prepared to keep transparency and awareness amongst the tax payer about their rights with the view to avoid irregularities and harassment.
In his welcome address, Engr. Daroo Khan Achakzai, President FPCCI highlighted precarious economic situation and said that Pakistan was passing through a transitory period and radical revolutionary reforms were being made in all sector of the economy including taxation. He said that government efforts of curtailing imports and levying regulatory duty on imported items have resulted in slashing imports and consequently declining in revenue collection. He said that previous system of levying penalty on daily basis be restored instead of declaring late filers as non tax filers and excluding them from active tax payer list.
Dr. Ikhtair Baig Senior Vice President FPCCI proposed to increase tax net and suggested to activate Alternative Dispute Resolution Committees to realize Rs. 38 billion of taxes lying pending in various courts for decisions. SVP FPCCI urged the FBR to encourage direct taxation system instead of indirect taxes which is very regressive in nature and a main cause of increase in inequality.
The meeting was attended by Vice Presidents FPCCI Mr. Muslim Muhammedi and Mr. Arshad Jamal, Mr. Zubair Tufail Former President FPCCI, Syed Mazhar Nasir, Advisor to President and Former Sr. Vice President FPCCI and Mr. Khalid Tawab Former Sr. Vice President FPCCI. During the Question and Answer session, the Chairman FBR replied to various queries raised by representative of various trade associations and leading businessmen.