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Federal Government aims to introduce a single tax returns reform

The federal government aims to introduce a single tax returns reform, which will make federal and provincial taxes consistent, a news source reported. For this purpose, the authorities plan to start a survey in Punjab on April 15, 2019.

With this step, the government also aims to identify the richest non-filers and execute sales tax registration of non-registered manufacturers’ units. Additionally, the Federal Board of Revenue’s (FBR) Directorate General for Special Measures will be made operational.

The directorate general will be responsible for coordinating with provincial authorities to design the information exchange mechanism, making the federal and provincial taxes consistent, and introducing the single tax reform. It will also design the mechanism for exchanging information to monitor/control tax theft, and trace the wealthy to bring them into the tax net.

Inland Revenue Policy Member Hamid Ateeq Sarwar has clearly stated the professional responsibilities of the directorate general. He has also said that the Punjab government will share the data collected through its survey with FBR, and its various departments. He added that this will help in taking action against those evading taxes. The directorate general will also monitor the actions taken, he revealed.

In further elaborating the tasks of the directorate general, Sarwar informed that it will identify individuals not paying their income taxes, and prepare a profile of non-filers. The authority will make profiles of those who have huge sums of money attached to their names, but who still have not acquired a National Tax Number (NTN), neither do they submit returns, he added.

The directorate general will also be tasked with registering large institutions, recording their number of employees, and determining the amount of electricity they utilize.

The decision to make the directorate general operational also includes the arrangement of staff, and creating two vacancies in the Inland Revenue Service. These include one vacancy for Grade-19 and another for Grade-21. FBR has sent the summary to create the new posts for approval. It is also preparing a separate budget to accommodate the employees’ salaries and fulfill the various expected expenses.

FBR also seeks the approval for a separate budget for this department in the federal budget 2019-20, and the funds allocated.

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