FBR seeks public help to track off­shore in­vestors

Enterprise - - National News -

The Fed­eral Board of Rev­enue (FBR) sought help of cit­i­zens to track in­di­vid­u­als with off­shore in­vest­ments. FBR made public a list of 151 lo­cals whose data was dis­closed in var­i­ous whistle­blower doc­u­ments, such as Panama, Paradise and Off­shore leaks.

The rev­enue body is fac­ing prob­lems in iden­ti­fy­ing and contacting the in­di­vid­u­als due to un­avail­abil­ity of their com­plete ad­dresses and other par­tic­u­lars.

FBR re­quested all cit­i­zens of Pak­istan who have any in­for­ma­tion that can lead to iden­ti­fi­ca­tion and track­ing of the in­di­vid­u­als to dis­charge their na­tional duty by help­ing the rev­enue col­lect­ing agency. FBR also as­sured the in­for­ma­tion providers that their iden­tity would strictly be kept con­fi­den­tial.

FBR of­fi­cials said the rev­enue body is un­der pres­sure due to suo motu notices by Supreme Court of Pak­istan in il­le­gal off­shore in­vest­ments and un­sat­is­fac­tory per­for­mance of rel­e­vant agen­cies to probe into in­vest­ments iden­ti­fied

in the data­base, which was re­leased by the In­ter­na­tional Con­sor­tium of In­ves­tiga­tive Jour­nal­ists.

In Fe­bru­ary, the apex court took a suo motu no­tice re­gard­ing undis­closed as­sets of Pak­ista­nis who main­tain bank ac­counts in for­eign countries and have off­shore in­vest­ments.

The apex court ex­pressed its dis­plea­sure over the per­for­mance of FBR and other agen­cies in bring­ing back the plun­dered money.

The Supreme Court or­dered the FBR to sub­mit a re­port with de­tails of the steps taken on the leaked fi­nan­cial in­for­ma­tion and the ac­tion taken against cit­i­zens hold­ing prop­er­ties and bank ac­counts in for­eign countries.

The apex court also con­sti­tuted a three-mem­ber com­mit­tee com­pris­ing the gover­nor of State Bank of Pak­istan, FBR chair­man and sec­re­tary fi­nance to en­cour­age peo­ple to bring back their off­shore as­sets. The court also di­rected FBR to in­form how many Pak­ista­nis hold ac­counts in Swiss and other banks.

Of­fi­cials said the rev­enue body di­rected tax of­fices to ob­tain in­for­ma­tion and take ac­tion against in­di­vid­u­als with off­shore in­vest­ments.

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