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LCCI: FBR chairman assures grievances will be addressed

LAHORE: In a bid to pacify the increasingly concerned business community, Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) Chairman Nisar Muhammad Khan has said that genuine grievances would be addressed once budget proposals of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) are received.

The FBR chairman said that the department is worried about the development of the country’s trade and industry sector as revenue collection is dependent on the success of the business community.

Khan said that the number of provincial taxes is much higher than the federal taxes therefore business community should take up this issue with their relevant governments.

He informed the LCCI delegation that tax-free import is allowed only on machinery and equipment for China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC). Raw materials have been excluded by the government from this list on the request of FBR.

LCCI President Abdul Basit said that the role of FBR is considered as a key facilitator to the private sector. “But our experience shows that dealing with the FBR, compliance and officials is not always easy,” said Basit. “Tax system is complicated and burdensome which creates room for complicities between taxpayers and the tax collectors.”

He said that number of taxes and frequency of paying taxes must be reduced. Moreover, taxes may be paid quarterly instead of every month.

“Additionally, there should be an electronic communication between taxpayers and tax departments.”

These proposals can make noticeable differences and win the confidence of taxpayers, said Basit.

He said that the government must ensure that concerned Chinese investors and companies engaged in CPEC must consider the indigenously produced inputs from Pakistan except those goods which are not produced locally. He added that goods which are not manufactured/produced in Pakistan, for example, soybean meal and grandparents chicks should not be taxed.

The LCCI president also proposed that instead of bringing changes in customs values, duty/tax rates should be rationalised which would be more effective in increasing government revenue.

He said that the exporters are suffering the most because they are facing serious issues of shortage of working capital. All the backlog of refunds should be cleared within two months upon the filing of returns.

courtesy : Express Tribune

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