Islamabad: The Rawalpindi Islamabad Tax Bar Association (RITBA) has suggested some changes to make national budget better and acceptable for all the stakeholders for which consultation with tax bars is imperative.
Speaking to a meeting of the executive body of RITBA, it’s President Syed Tauqeer Bukhari and Secretary General Zahid Shafique said that the process of sales tax registration has been simplified which is a welcome more. They said that there are over three hundred and fifty thousand industrial electricity connection while almost fifty thousand entities have Sales Tax registration, therefore, the FBR should bring these units into the tax net.
The definition of cottage industry has been changed, earlier it was exempted from Sales Tax but now only that the industry will be exempted which is located in the residential areas which is amazing as the law does not allow setting up industry in the residential area.
The tax experts said that those who buy items of daily use from big retailers are charged with 17 per cent sales tax but now FBR has decided to payback five per cent of the tax which is laudable but the procedure should be simplified for its success.
It is very difficult for the business community to write national identity card number on every invoice, which will promote the culture of business through fake identity cards, therefore, the proposal should be taken back.
Earlier, the businessmen were relieved of repeated audits for three years but the related clause has been abolished and now audit can be conducted as many times as deemed necessary by the tax officials which will lead to harassment and bribery.
The move suggests that FBR is more interested in milking existing taxpayers and not keen to find new taxpayers to improve revenue collection, they observed. Another amendment in the Sales Tax Act will result in the departmental inquiry against tax officials facing corruption charges and FIA will have nothing to do with it which must be reconsidered.
Abolishing clause 1125 of the Sales Tax Act will hit the export sector and pave way for corruption which should be given a second thought while the definition of non-resident Pakistanis has been changed which will result in problems.
The meeting was also attended by SVP RITBA Faraz Fazal Sheikh, VP Naeemul Haq Advocate, Media Coordinator Sofia Akhtar, Jamal Akhtar Mian, Safeer Ahmed, Azhar Hussain Sheikh, Habibullah, Khalid Masood Malik, Tauseef Alam, Hassan Raza Baluch, Ijaz Hussain Rathore and others who rejected the proposal to impose 17 per cent tax on legal practitioners.