Saturday March 02, 2024

Tax troubles

By News Desk
December 06, 2023

This refers to the letter ‘Sheriffs of Nottingham’ (November 25, 2023) by Dr Najeeb A Khan. The writer has suggested that the government should not disconnect the utilities of non-filers and come up with alternate means to facilitate tax collection. The FBR has already indicated that they will be using AI to help broaden the tax base. 

I think it is illogical for the state to impose high taxation rates given Pakistan’s paltry welfare system. The supposed trillions of rupees worth of circular debt in the utilities sector is also often cited as a justification for increasing taxes.

Tax troubles

I think these claims need to be verified via an audit of the utilities companies by internationally reputable firms. The use of AI for tax purposes also carries its own dangers as if the data fuelling the algorithms is faulty, millions could be hit with unjust claims. One must also consider the fact that AI will be of limited use when it comes to tracking down those avoiding taxes in the retail sector.

M Shaikh