GUJRANWALA: Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has said that energy supply and public sector development programme could only flourish if all citizens pay their due taxes voluntarily.
The minister claimed that all major economic indicators were pointing to the fact that economy had started showing signs of revival and that it was moving on the right track.
Talking to a delegation of Gujranwala Chamber of Commerce and Industry, the Finance Minister said that economic challenges still remained on the horizon and much work had to be done to address them.
Ishaq Dar said that taxes and documentation will go along and the government would employ necessary measures to facilitate exporters. He also mentioned that it was very heartening to note that there was 17 per cent increase in revenue collection. On government’s part, he said, it had adopted austerity measures and implemented 30 per cent current expenditures cut by all federal ministries. He informed that the government had also abolished discretionary fund of the Prime Minister and the federal ministries.
The Finance Minister assured the Chamber that a permanent Commissioner (Appeals) would be posted in Gujranwala to facilitate the business community. He asserted that the government was striving hard to remove all impediments to the progress of the industry which would help increase exports. “We will work with the business community to achieve our export targets,” he declared, adding that the government was working on a plan to improve power and gas supplies.
Federal Minister for Commerce Khurram Dastgir led the delegation. GCCI President Noman Salauddin on behalf of the Chamber felicitated the Finance Minister on attaining GSP Plus status for Pakistan that would go a long way in boosting exports.
He expressed hope that small and medium industry of Gujranwala would also benefit from the status. The delegation apprised the Minister that over the past eight months power supply to industrial sector remained better which enabled the manufacturers to increase their productivity.
The delegation apprised the Minister of the difficulties and problems being faced by the business community. On the occasion, the GCCI president informed that the business community wanted to pay taxes and suggested improvements in return filing system. He stressed that expeditious refund of general sales tax would enable the business community to perform at their maximum potential. Moreover, Noman Salauddin also requested for the appointment of a permanent Commissioner (Appeals) in Gujranwala to facilitate the business community. He also requested for relief to cottage, small and medium enterprises in the next budget.
During the meeting, Commerce Minister Khurrram Dastagir appreciated for the city’s business community for its exemplary role in the promotion of small and medium entrepreneurship.
Finance Secretary Dr Waqar Masood, Economic Adviser to Finance Ministry Rana Assad Amin, Additional Secretary Shahid Mahmood and members of the GCCI were also present on the occasion.