PM or­ders widen­ing tax base

Govt won’t al­low any­one to be­come im­ped­i­ment to progress: Raja

The Pak Banker - - Front Page -

IS­LAM­ABAD

Prime Min­is­ter, Raja Pervez Ashraf on Mon­day said widen­ing the tax base and in­creas­ing tax to GDP ra­tio by rais­ing the level of col­lec­tion is im­per­a­tive for sus­tain­able de­vel­op­ment in the coun­try.

He ex­pressed these views while pre­sid­ing over a meet­ing of Fed­eral Board of Rev­enue here at the PM House this af­ter­noon. The Chair­man FBR Mr Ali Ar­shad Ha­keem in­formed the meet­ing that tax col­lec­tion had dou­bled since 2008 from Rs 01 tril­lion to Rs 2 tril­lion this year. He said also there was recorded an in­crease of 22 per­cent in the tax rev­enues this year as com­pared to the last year. The meet­ing was in­formed that there were 805,000 reg­is­tered tax pay­ers of which 260,000 peo­ple paid taxes con­sec­u­tively for three years. The Prime Min­is­ter said the self-re­spect of the tax pay­ers should be pro­tected and a tax­a­tion struc­ture aimed at en­hanc­ing rev­enues be stream­lined in a man­ner where a cul­ture of vol­un­tary tax pay­ment is pro­moted.

The Prime Min­is­ter said that a large seg­ment of Pak­istan’s econ­omy was in­for­mal, de­priv­ing the na­tional ex­che­quer of its due share and act­ing as a hin­drance for eco­nomic plan­ning and de­vel­op­ment. The men­ace of cap­i­tal flight to tax havens has de­prived the coun­try of its true po­ten­tial for de­vel­op­ment and progress, he added.

The Prime Min­is­ter said de­mand for cars, lux­ury goods and hous­ing re­flected the avail­abil­ity of wealth in the coun­try. Un­for­tu­nately tax base is not com­men­su­rate to this phe­nom­e­non, he re­gret­ted.

The Prime Min­is­ter urged the FBR to plug leak­age of taxes and bring elite groups of the so­ci­ety into the tax net. The meet­ing was at­tended by Dr Ab­dul Hafeez Shaikh Min­is­ter for Fi­nance, Syed Naveed Qa­mar Min­is­ter for De­fence, Syed Khur­sheed Ahmed Shah Min­is­ter for Reli­gious Af­fairs, Fa­rooq H. Naek Min­is­ter for Law, Dr Nadeem ul Haq Deputy Chair­man Plan­ning Com­mis­sion and se­nior of­fi­cials.

Mean­while, Prime Min­is­ter Raja Pervez Ashraf on Mon­day said that the gov­ern­ment would not al­low any­one to be­come an im­ped­i­ment in its at­tempt to carve a bet­ter fu­ture for Pak­istan’s younger and fu­ture gen­er­a­tions.

Ad­dress­ing a cer­e­mony or­gan­ised by the Na­tional High­way and Mo­tor­way po­lice in Is­lam­abad, the prime min­is­ter said that his gov­ern­ment be­lieved in the im­por­tance of a sys­tem based on merit.

He said the gov­ern­ment was de­ter­mined to se­cure the fu­ture for the coun­try’s younger gen­er­a­tions, adding that, it would not al­low any­one to be­come an ob­sta­cle in this pur­suit.

Prime Min­is­ter Ashraf said ter­ror­ism and ex­trem­ism were daunt­ing chal­lenges for Pak­istan, adding that, law en­force­ment per­son­nel had been sac­ri­fic­ing their lives to counter them.

The premier added that the re­spon­si­bil­i­ties of law en­force­ment agen­cies had in­creased in the pre­vail­ing cir­cum­stances.

He said the gov­ern­ment was work­ing with the ob­jec­tive of pro­tect­ing the lives and prop­er­ties of the pub­lic.

The prime min­is­ter added that the po­lice would have to cre­ate its space in the hearts of the peo­ple through its acts and its at­ti­tude.

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