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Sindh Revenue Minister acknowledges inefficiency in agri tax recovery

Sindh Revenue Minister acknowledges inefficiency in agri tax recovery

KARACHI: Sindh Minister for Revenue Makhdoom Mehboob Zaman has admitted that the provincial government could only manage to recover 21 percent of the target for agriculture tax during last fiscal year, vowing to bring improvement.

Replying to questions during the assembly session, the minister admitted that the system for agriculture tax collection is not very efficient; however added that the same is being used in other provinces as well. “We do face difficulties in the tax collection but there is considerable improvement than the past. We are taking all possible steps to get the desired result,” he added.

Zaman informed the house that more than Rs210 million was recovered from all parts of the province except Karachi during 2017-18 under the head of agriculture income tax. It may be noted here that the department remained unable to achieve even half of Rs one billion, the target set by the government for 2017-18. Surprisingly, the recovery of 2016-17 was more than the last fiscal year as more than Rs 220 million had been recovered that time around.

Grand Democratic Alliance lawmaker Arif Mustafa Jatoi asked as if everybody who is bound to pay the agriculture tax is paying the same on which the minister replied that they collect tax on identification of Mukhtiarkar. The Muttahida Qaumi Movement-Pakistan parliamentary leader Kanwar Naveed Jameel expressed dissatisfaction on the current tax collection system and termed it fragile. “Just a nominal tax is being collected owing to this weekend system. When will the government make its system effective and efficient just like the Federal Board of Revenue,” Jameel asked.

Instead of arguing, the minister acknowledged less-efficiency of the system and vowed to bring further improvement.