ISLAMABAD - Coordinator to Minister of State and Federal Tax Ombudsman Meher Kashif Younis Sunday emphasised the critical need for broadening the tax base by targeting tax evasion in Pakistan.
Speaking at a round table conference themed “Impact of broadening tax base on the economy by checking tax avoidance” organised under the aegis of Gold Ring Economic Forum, a strategic think tank, he said our economic stability and growth are contingent on a robust and equitable taxation system, and it is imperative that we must take decisive action to identify and net those evading their tax obligations.
The current state of our tax base is cause for concern, with a significant portion of potential revenue slipping through the cracks due to evasion, he said, adding that this not only hampers the government’s ability to fund essential services but also places an unfair burden on law-abiding citizens who fulfil their tax responsibilities. Hailing FBR’s decision of establishing 145 district tax offices across the country said identifying tax evaders requires a multi-faceted approach involving collaboration between government agencies, financial institutions, and tax authorities.
He said leveraging technology for data analytics and employing sophisticated tracking mechanisms can significantly enhance our ability to pinpoint individuals or entities engaging in tax evasion. Meher Kashif who is also chairman Kyrgyzstan Trade House in Pakistan said, moreover, it is crucial to strengthen legal frameworks and penalties to deter potential tax evaders. By doing so, we send a clear message that tax evasion will not be tolerated, fostering a culture of compliance and accountability.
He urged the government to champion efforts to prioritize the identification and prosecution of tax evaders. This initiative is not just about revenue generation; it is about ensuring the sustainability and fairness of our economic system. By broadening the tax base, we can contribute to building a stronger and more prosperous Pakistan for current and future generations, he concluded.