ISLAMABAD: The President of the Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) Mian Idrees accompanied by former President, FPCCI, Zubair Tufail called on the Federal Minister for Finance Mohammad Ishaq Dar here Friday morning.
They discussed the issue of withholding tax on banking transactions with the Minister in detail. They informed the Minister about meetings with traders and representatives of various business spheres to ascertain their standpoint and apprehensions with regard to the withholding tax.
The Minister assured the trade representatives that their fears, apprehensions and misunderstandings will be addressed appropriately. The Finance Minister reiterated that the levy of withholding tax was only applicable to the non-filers and the business community should have a clear understanding of this fact.
The filers, whether their income was in taxable limit or not, were all exempted from paying this tax. So they had nothing to fear from the imposition of withholding tax, the Finance Minister said. He added that this was a golden opportunity for the traders to file their returns of income with the tax authorities. On becoming filers they would automatically avail facility of exemption from withholding tax on banking transactions. He said FBR was pursuing business friendly policies and would welcome new entrants, broadening the tax net. The traders should completely remove any doubts from their minds that they would be subjected to persecution in future.
The Finance Minister said it was the responsibility of the citizens to fulfill their obligation towards strengthening of national economy and the business community keeping in view this spirit should file their returns.
The Minister said it had come to his notice that in some instances banks had deducted withholding tax on banking transactions of filers. He added that SBP had been asked to instruct banks not to deduct withholding tax from banking transactions of filers and reverse the entries where this tax had been deducted erroneously. The Minister said there was no excuse for holding strikes and harming the economy.
The Minister said that Pakistan is moving towards growth and development and we are all responsible to contribute our share in this process.