Tarin vows to address KCCI’s concerns over tax laws amendment

Staff Reporter BOL News

02nd Oct, 2021. 06:37 pm
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KARACHI: Federal Minister for Finance and Revenue Shaukat Tarin has assured that the Ministry of Finance would make efforts to address the reservations of the Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) on the amendment to the Tax Laws (Third Amendment) Ordinance, 2021, a statement said on Saturday.

He said that he would look into the possibility of re-examining the term ‘non-filer’ and ‘under-filer’ in consultation with stakeholders whereas in the meantime, none would suffer as the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) will not take the action directly.

“The FBR will share relevant data with the chamber and also upload the same on its website,” he said, adding that  the government intended to get a help from artificial intelligence and assessment would be done through a third party, while an appropriate time of 90 days would be provided to non-taxpayers for settlement.

He said this while speaking at a meeting with a delegation of KCCI.

Federal minister for energy Hammad Azhar, adviser to PM on commerce Abdul Razak Dawood, Chairman FBR chairman Ashfaq Ahmed and other senior officials of finance ministry and FBR also accompanied Shaukat Tarin at the meeting, while the KCCI’s delegation was led by Businessmen Group (BMG) chairman and KCCI former president Zubair Motiwala including vice chairmen Haroon Farooqi and Jawed Bilwani, general secretary AQ Khalil and KCCI president Muhammad Idrees.

Referring to chairman BMG’s remarks about discrimination with export-oriented industries of Sindh with regards to supply of RLNG at $6.5 per mmbtu, Hammad Azhar agreed to supply RLNG at $6.5 per mmbtu to export-oriented industries of Sindh.

“The ministry of finance will sanction subsidies and relevant notification will also be issued,” he said.

Azhar stated that the ministry of energy will also convene a meeting to discuss KCCI’s concerns over gas crises in winter season so that they could explore ways and means for a smooth supply of gas to industries/ consumers of SSGC in winter season. He said that the SSGC managing director will also be advised to hold a meeting with KCCI in this regard.

PM’s adviser Abdul Razak Dawood said that they were considering a waiver of duty on import of cotton yarn. KCCI’s proposal to reduce concessional rate of 0.1 per cent to 0.01 per cent on traders/ brokers of cotton yarn under SRO.333 (I) 2001 on May 02, 2011 has been taken into consideration in the interest of value-added exports.

Appreciating KCCI’s idea of giving industry status to “Warehousing / Cold Chain / Cold Storage”, he said that the government will look into this matter.

He reiterated that Drawback on Local Taxes and Levies (DLTL) will either continue with the same rate or the government may scale up the rate of drawback whereas the old income tax claims will also be refunded at the earliest.

Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) chairman Dr Ashfaq Ahmed assured that the government will review the matter about the CNIC requirement and 3 per cent tax that KCCI believes should not be mandatory but optional as 3 per cent tax on sales to unregistered persons was already being collected hence there was no need for demanding CNIC. He also promised to hold a meeting within next week via zoom facility to discuss the progress on various taxation issues.

Problems being faced because of the condition to place invoice and packing list inside imported container or consignment, the lawmakers assured that KCCI’s proposal would be reviewed that the bank should only receive documents when invoice and packing list is attached to the documents. They said that the consignment should be released with the provision of invoice and packing list from the Customs.

It was also assured that the government will also look into KCCI’s proposals to amend provision under S No 4 in which a new section 114B has been inserted in Income Tax Ordinance 2001, providing discretionary powers to FBR to issue general orders to disable mobile phones/SIMS, disconnect electricity and gas connection to enforce filing of returns by the persons not appearing on the active taxpayer list (ATL)

The KCCI has proposed the provision may be amended to substitute the words “Persons not appearing on ATL” with “Unregistered Persons” to achieve the purpose of broadening of tax-base.

The KCCI delegation thanked the government officials for addressing problems being faced by the business community.

The finance minister also assured that he would keep visiting the KCCI after three months regularly, while the FBR head would come to the chamber on a monthly basis.

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