ISLAMABAD: Federal Board of Revenue has planned to bring one hundred thousand individuals and businesses in the tax net before the end of the current fiscal year.
According to sources within FBR it has been decided to ensure that the tax collections are equal to at least 12 per cent of the GDP at the end of the current fiscal year. However, it is seems an unrealistic task as currently tax collection constitutes a little over 8 per cent of the GDP for the moment.
Sources said that under the guidelines of the Ministry of Finance, a private firm was hired to locate the tax evaders and those not disclosing their income accordingly and fully. A number of big shots including shareholders of stock markets, currency dealers, real estate brokers, wholesale dealers of fruits and vegetables, brick kiln owners, poultry farmers located in isolated localities, hatcheries, honey farmers, etc.
These people, the sources said, are being sent notices that they are guilty of mis-declaration of their assets and income which is a crime. They are asked to voluntarily deposit taxes and warned of registration of cases and raids at their business premises if they do not comply. Sources further said that the authorities believe this step is meant for increasing revenue as well as enhancement of tax net in Pakistan.
Economists believe that to bring Pakistan’s economy on sound footings the revenue generated through taxes should be at least 20 per cent of the GDP as modern countries of the world have. Tax evasion of the kind in Pakistan leaves the relevant authorities to rely on indirect taxes that cause price hikes and create hardships for the low salaried classes.