Thursday February 29, 2024

Finance minister stops implementation of FBR’s Common Pool Fund rules

By Our Correspondent
February 05, 2023

ISLAMABAD: Minister for Finance Ishaq Dar has stopped implementing Common Pool Fund (CPF) rules issued by the FBR for benefiting Inland Revenue Service (IRS) officers keeping in view difficult economic situations.

Apropos a news items appearing in certain sections of the press referring to Common Pool Fund Rules notified by the Federal Board of Revenue, the Ministry of Finance and Revenue has clarified that through the Finance Act 2019, Section 76 was inserted in the Sales Tax Act 1990, which empowers the FBR with the approval of the minister incharge to impose levy, fee and service charges on Tier-1 retailers @ Re 1 per invoice.

Subsequently, the FBR with the approval of the then federal finance minister levied a POS Service Fee of Re 1 per invoice on Tier-1 retailers. The purpose of the aforesaid levy was explicit and duly included the welfare of IRS employees. This was notified vide SROS.R.O.1279(I)/2021 dated 30th September, 2021. Under the provisions of Section 76 (2) of the Sales Tax Act 1990, the FBR is authorized to prescribe the mode and manner to expend such service fee/charges. Thereafter, the FBR issued Common Pool Fund Rules for the welfare of its employees on 16.01.2023 with the approval of the Board-in-Council. The heads of expenditure provided in the rules include financial assistance to families of Shuhada, subsidy on marriage expenditure, health insurance, scholarships for education of children, headquarters support allowance, fuel subsidy to the junior officers, IRS officers mess, house rent subsidy, support for widows and burial expenses. Keeping in view the current economic situation in Pakistan, Dr has taken notice of the matter and directed the FBR to put the implementation of these rules on hold.