Pakistan News

Trade leaders call for widening of tax net

Trade leaders call for widening of tax net

KARACHI: The government needs to take a policy decision for broadening of tax net and increasing revenue collection rather than short-term measures like imposition of withholding tax on non-filers of tax returns.

These observations were made by business leaders at a media briefing chaired by Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) President Mian Mohammad Adrees on Friday.

The leaders unanimously said that without taking a drastic policy decision, the government would not succeed in its objective of broadening the tax net and increasing revenue collection.

The FPCCI president said that the business leaders would be holding a meeting with Finance Minister Ishaq Dar on July 30 over the issue of 0.3 per cent withholding tax on banking transactions for non-filers and other issues.

They said that reliance on indirect taxes should be gradually reduced and direct taxes should be encouraged so that the burden could be fairly shared by each segment of society as per capacity.

In the meeting, doubts were raised about the authenticity of figures of ‘good economic performance’ highlighted by the government.

“There is confusion over economic performance because facts are either being concealed, manipulated or fudged. The government claims of single-digit inflation, stable rupee rate, rising foreign exchange reserves and lowest discount rate. Exports are not crossing the $25 billion-mark and poverty and unemployment are rising while industrial and agriculture targets are not being met,” the leaders said.

The FPPCI will hold a media briefing in first week of every month to give a true picture of the economy, he said.

He added that the FPCCI’s research and development cell will analyse all the economic figures issued by the government from time to time and compare them with those of the State Bank of Pakistan and other institutions to draw an authentic picture.

Earlier, the media cell was inaugurated by the FPCCI president.

Published in Dawn, July 25th, 2015

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