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Author Archives: S M Haider

FY 2013-14: FBR collects Rs2,224b provisionally

ISLAMABAD: Federal Board of Revenue has collected Rs 2,224 billion in the outgoing fiscal year ending on June 30, 2014 against a collection of Rs 1,946 billion during the previous fiscal year. FBR had revised the tax target twice down to Rs 2,275 billion. Initially, the tax target was envisaged up to Rs 2,475 and then reduced to Rs 2,345 ... Read More »

PM convenes meeting on withdrawal of tax exemptions

ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif will convene an important meeting on Friday (today) for finalizing hundreds of tax exemptions and withdrawals of concessions through Statutory Regulatory Orders (SROs) in the upcoming budget. In order to achieve a challenging revenue collection target of Rs 2,810 billion in the next fiscal year against twice revised target of Rs 2,275 billion in outgoing ... Read More »

IMF cuts Pakistan’s tax target by Rs75b

ISLAMABAD: FBR’s tax target has been revised downward from Rs 2,345 billion to Rs 2,270 billion for outgoing fiscal year 2013-14. The IMF and Pakistan have agreed to slash down the FBR’s target in the context of appreciation of rupee against dollar that negatively impacted the tax revenues to the tune of Rs 70-75 billion. “FBR’s target has been slashed ... Read More »

Slow processing of refunds

ISLAMABAD: The stuck up of refunds on both sales tax and income tax has again surfaced as major issue confronting taxpayers of the country in the second half (Jan-June) of the current fiscal year. The major difficulty for taxpayers emerged where manual refund claims were made and Large Taxpayers Units (LTUs) and Regional Taxpayers Offices (RTOs) preferred to meet their ... Read More »

Holistic approach needed for agricultural development: Dar

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Finance Ishaq Dar has said that a holistic approach is needed for development of agricultural sector and finance in Pakistan. He was speaking as chief guest at the launching ceremony of the 2nd Challenge Round of Financial Innovation Challenge Fund (FICF) on “Promoting Innovative Rural and Agriculture Finance in Pakistan.” The programme is being funded by UKAid ... Read More »

Without skilled workforce, broadening of tax net seems a distant dream

ISLAMABAD: In the wake of slapping ban by the government on recruitment of fresh jobs, the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has been facing severe constraints of human resource and this difficulty will aggravate with passage of time if remedial measures are not taken well on time. Total numerical strength of the tax collection machinery is 23,000 and mid carrier ... Read More »

Ambitious plan of increasing foreign reserves

ISLAMABAD: In the wake of high optimism shown by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar to increase foreign currency reserves up to $10 billion by end March 2014 seems highly ambitious one keeping in view more outflow for repaying the previous IMF loans than inflows pouring in through installments under existing Extended Fund Facility (EFF). At the moment, the foreign exchange reserves ... Read More »

Prudent fiscal policy & accountability essential for stability

ISLAMABAD: By tabling debt and fiscal policy statements before the Parliament, the government has fulfilled legal requirement under Fiscal Responsibility and Debt Limitation Act 2005 prepared and approved during the era of former military ruler Gen (Retd) Pervez Musharraf. The government has accepted that the last fiscal year ended on June 30, 2013 witnessed violation of different provisions of Fiscal ... Read More »

Govt accepts SBP governor’s resignation: Dar

ISLAMABAD: The Federal Government has accepted the resignation of Governor State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) Yaseen Anwar with effect from January 31, 2014, said the Federal Minister for Finance Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar. The decision regarding the new Acting Governor SBP shall be made on January 31. Read More »

Bajwa to take part in policy level talks with IMF review mission

ISAMABAD: Chairman FBR Tariq Bajwa will participate in policy level talks with the IMF review mission in Dubai starting from February 5, 2014. The policy level talks will commence from Feb 5, 2014 for four days in which both sides will agree on new set of conditions for next quarter which will pave the way for release of tranche worth ... Read More »

Pak-India trade talks

ISLAMABAD: After pause of several months, Pakistan and India have resumed trade talks at secretary level in New Delhi in order to promote bilateral trade relations between two neighboring countries. The two arch-rivals which publicly declared their ability to become part of nuclear club during the decade of 90s have been left without no other option but to normalize their ... Read More »

A welcome step

Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Senator Ishaq Dar has taken a welcoming decision to allow the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) for publishing tax directory of Parliamentarians. Under Pakistan’s tax laws, the federal government has granted permission to the FBR to publish such a tax directory of parliamentarians. Now this move will pave the way for convincing other influential ... Read More »

A daunting task

ISLAMABAD: A daunting task has been lying ahead for the tax collection machinery as FBR will have to collect Rs 1445 billion in second half (Jan-June) period to display the desired tax collection target of Rs 2475 on its board on June 30, 2014. In first six months (July-Dec) period of the current fiscal year, FBR had collected Rs 1030 ... Read More »

Only a powerful Economic Advisory Council can fix financial problems

ISLAMABAD: With constitution of Economic Advisory Council (EAC) placed by Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, the government seems serious to take different independent economists and divergent voices into confidence in the process of formulating policies to fix the economic problems. One thing should be made crystal clear that the economy of Pakistan could not run with the approach of status quo ... Read More »

Tax reforms: What needs to be done?

ISLAMABAD: Tax reforms in Pakistan have largely remained a problematic area as after recent attempt during the Musharraf regime, it resulted into decline in tax-to-GDP ratio. Under Tax Administration Reform Project (TARP) funded by World Bank in shape of loan and UK based DFID through grants helped FBR for constructing brick and mortars by constructing beautiful buildings, purchasing vehicles but ... Read More »

Pakistan gets GSP Plus status; exports likely to increase by $2b per annum

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has obtained the status of Generalized System of Preference (GSP) plus from its largest trading partner of 27-member block of European Union which will become effective from January 1, 2014. This move will increase exports by $2 billion on per annum basis. The European Parliament voted on a resolution objecting to the delegated act presented by the European ... Read More »

Plan afoot to do away with tax exemptions by Dec 31: Dar

ISLAMABAD: Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Ishaq Dar said that the government was working on a plan for doing away with tax exemptions and it would be finalized by December 31, 2013. “Yes, we are working on the plan to do away with tax exemptions,” the minister said while briefing reporters. He said that tax exemptions would be identified ... Read More »

Tax incentive package a step in right direction

ISLAMABAD: The tax incentive package announced by Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif is a good step in the right direction but it requires in-depth analysis whether it will provide any benefit to kick-start economic activities or will prove to be another eye wash for sharing benefits to just few business cronies of the incumbent regime. If one analyzed historical prospective of ... Read More »

Govt all set to reduce expenses of foreign missions by Rs3.5b

ISLAMABAD: The government is all set to reduce expenditures on foreign missions abroad by Rs 3 to Rs 3.5 billion per annum. The decision to this effect was taken during the meeting of the Committee to Review the Performance of Pakistani Missions abroad here on Wednesday which met under the chairmanship of Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar. The Committee deliberated on ... Read More »

Govt’s vigorous privatization plan

ISLAMABAD: The PML (N) led government is heavily relying upon pursuing vigorous privatization plan by off-loading shares of 32 public sector enterprises and handing over management control into hands of buyers in the first phase under IMF’s conditions. In the calendar year 2014, the government seems interested to off-load shares of 10 to 12 institutions including national flag carrier PIA. ... Read More »