TO WHOM FILING OF INCOME TAX IS COMPULSORYFebruary 29, 2020
GROWTH IN TAX COLLECTIONMarch 16, 2020
For tax reform somebody needs to tell the prime minister that the vicious formula of the IMF calling for more charges, austerity, and high-interest rates will not solve our difficulties as we need to give tax education to our people. No the government in Pakistan, including the present one, has to provide tax education build knowledge-based research programs for sectors of the economy that need tax reforms. For example, not a single tax reform study is prepared to outline step-wise tax improvements or developing tourism.
The word tax reforms is a cliché unless backed by solid research, executable plans, and a plan to execute the same. The combination governments of Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) at the Centre and in the regions, like other parties, lack a method of tax reform. We need a pragmatic roadmap and tax education to make the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) and other tax agencies efficient. Many models are available for requesting a tax education and then devising the best policy that suits us.
TAX AND NON-TAX REVENUES:
For tax reform, we need tax and non-tax revenues to not only eliminate the economic deficiency and retire debts but also to provide enough tax education and funds for foundation based projects, human resource development, health, education, transport, and housing, etc. With tax education and with accelerated growth in agriculture and agro-based value-added industries, Pakistan can retire external and internal debts and become self-reliant, but where are the research for tax reform and the executable programs? The path to success requires tax education, finance, training of human resources, and tapping of considerable unexploited mineral resources. We need to develop a blue marketplace, create an exportable excess, establish import-substitution activities; all these can provide jobs to millions of now jobless youth.
REDESIGNING THE OPERATIONS:
Tax reforms and tax education must focus on establishing the masses that money collected from them would be spent on their well-being and is not going to waste. We need to tax reform operations providing the masses with quality health and educational facilities, decent housing, transport, and universal pension. Taxes and benefits must go hand in hand for creating a tax culture of voluntary payments. The PTI government has so far shown only good intentions. Both federal and provincial governments must stop being satisfied and work on improving systems and providing tax education by undertaking much-needed and long-overdue structural tax reforms in all spheres of governance. Even if the FBR collects Rs 5000 billion after new tax reform have been imposed as proposed by the IMF, after transfer to provinces under National Finance Commission (NFC) Award, net tax collection available to the federal government will be around Rs 2,400 billion. The PTI government is becoming unpopular as people are feeling the heat of horrible extension. It still has a chance to win the confidence of the people by modifying all anti-people schemes and by providing tax reform and tax education.
We must eliminate multiple taxes and raise local tax reform to meet local needs by designating funds to local governments to provide services of health, education, civic amenities of all kinds, and recreation, etc. All residents and other entities should be given a chance to declare all untaxed assets for any past year, at home, or abroad, by paying due tax liability in full or in installments to overcome cash liquidity problems, of program, spending additional tax for grace periods. After the deadline, severe action under the law should be taken, including the confiscation of assets, delicate and restraint. Somebody needs to tell the prime minister that the unfair formula of the IMF for more tax reform, will not work. The only resolution is to decrease wasteful expenditure and provide tax education to monetize all gains of civil servants and tax reform honestly.