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No substantial change in tax/duties rates for FY 2018-19: Dr  Iqbal

No substantial change in tax/duties rates for FY 2018-19: Dr  Iqbal

ISLAMABAD: Member Inland Revenue Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) Dr. Iqbal, said that there would be no substantial change in the rates of taxes and customs and regulatory duties for the upcoming fiscal year 2018-19. In this regard, internal discussions are underway at relevant wings and quarters of FBR and no final decision has yet been made.

While briefing the National Assembly Standing Committee on Finance and Revenue here on the tax amnesty scheme, he said that tax amnesty scheme had been introduced to overcome the loopholes for the offshore investments; therefore, every filer would have to fill an additional form to describe offshore company or asset along with the income tax returns.

He further said that remittances of $10 million had been fixed as minimum threshold for a person and on receiving over this amount, the receiver would be held questionable to declare the source of remittance; however, he would not have to pay any additional tax on this amount.

“Previously, FBR had not authority to ask anyone about the source of remittances of billions of dollars. Even FBR does not get any information about any transaction of money from abroad and it is often disclosed by the filers in the tax returns” he observed.

Now and onward, he said that every filer would have to declare assets abroad in the tax returns; otherwise, FBR would impose penalty of 2% per annum of total value of an undeclared asset of any filers if detected by FBR and this penalty would continue in the coming years too.

Therefore, under tax amnesty scheme, he said that a filer would be able to declare an undeclared asset by paying 5% tax of the total value of the asset as well as 2% tax on an undeclared foreign currency bank account.

He added that tax to GDP ratio would be fixed at five to six percent during the next fiscal year. Bureaucratic machinery is just to give input in the budget whereas the duty of implementation of any policy comes on the members of the parliament or the ruling party.

To a question about the background of imposition of regulatory duty on tyres, Dr Iqbal said that RD was imposed to check the import of tyres because import hurt the local tyre manufacturing industry, but lowered import of tyres had hurt the revenue collection of the FBR.

“But, Ministry of Commerce (MoC) takes decision regarding the imposition of RDs on the import in the wake of creating a balance between the imports and exports; therefore, RD on the import of tyres has also been moved by the MoC” he maintained.