KCCI concerned over proposed further tax

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KARACHI: The Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) has expressed concern over additional tax burden through ‘further tax’ proposed by the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) for the upcoming budget 2013-14.


In a statement on Wednesday, the KCCI expressed concern over the news reports that the revenue body has made additional taxation measures in the draft Tax Laws (Amendment) Ordinance, 2013, which has been made part of the new budget proposals for 2013-14.


The ordinance contains additional taxation measures of Rs200 billion for 2013-14. Through the draft Tax Laws (Amendment) Ordinance, 2013, the FBR has proposed to increase the standard rate of sales tax from 16 to 17 percent and imposition of two percent ‘further tax’ on the supplies to unregistered persons, 17 percent sales tax on sugar and proposed imposition of 10 percent withholding tax on domestic electricity consumers having monthly electricity consumption of over 1,000 units, the KCCI said.


Some other measures and anti-business actions deliberately taken by the FBR are aimed at destroying the economy, as it will encourage black economy, smuggling, tax evasion, under-invoicing and mis-declaration, resulting in decline in exports, it added.


Across-the-board increase in taxes by the FBR has come as a shock to the business and industrial community across the country.


The incompetence and the lack of will on the part of the FBR to broaden the tax base is reflected in the drastic increase in the general sales tax (GST) and withholding tax on the existing taxpayers and is a shortcut to achieve revenue targets. The measures are bound to fail and will result in widespread protests by the trade and industry.


Against the proposals of apex bodies across Pakistan, which have demanded reduction in GST to eight to nine percent, the FBR has proposed an increase in the standard rate of sales tax up to 17 percent. “This measure will result in tax evasion and discourage new potential tax payers,” the KCCI said, adding that the tax collection would not increase as a result of increase in the GST rate.


The Karachi Chamber is of the view that the revenue body has no will and intention to broaden the tax base and instead bringing those untaxed individuals with massive wealth and substantial income into the tax net. The FBR is using the conventional tactics of squeezing honest taxpayers who are already in the net.


The trade and industry outright rejected the proposed measures and will not accept further taxes and draconian steps, which will harm the business climate and have a negative impact on the overall economy.


The KCCI also believes that such measures should be implemented after consultation with leading chambers of commerce and industry, the statement added.

Courtesy: The News

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