Businessmen can turn Pakistan into economic giant
LAHORE (Staff Reporter): Lord Mayor Lahore Mubashir Javed has said that business community has the ability to turn Pakistan into an economic giant. He was speaking at the Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry. The LCCI President Malik Tahir Javaid, Senior Vice President Khawaja Khawar Rashid, Vice President Zeshan Khalil and EC members also spoke on the occasion and highlighted the challenges being faced by the business community. The lord mayor said that the world is in a state of "economic war" since long and all economies are working hard to win the race. He said that various countries, which were economically deprived in 70s, have done reasonable progress. He said that government has started work to clean temporary encroachments in order to make the flow of traffic smooth. The LCCI president Malik Tahir Tavaid said that in today's fast changing world, cites compete with each other for attracting business. A most striking feature of the Census 2017 is that around 66 percent of the population of Pakistan now lives in ten cities.
He said they are the level at which the ease of doing business is judged. This makes the measurement of the size of the economy of cities and the understanding of its structure extremely important.
APBF foresees massive boost in IT industry from CPEC
LAHORE (Staff Reporter): The CPEC is a transnational project which promises faster growth and infrastructural development of the whole region. It will effectively serve the long-term economic interests of both the countries. As the All Pakistan Business Forum (APBF) is a vibrant business association which promotes and protects the interests of the business community and industries in Pakistan, the association is pleased to see the big opportunities promised by CPEC, therefore it would urge the government to ensure that all provinces benefit equitably from this revolutionary project. Pakistan's domestic IT market is expected to witness growth due to CPEC Projects. APBF President Ibrahim Qureshi said that; "We appreciate China's robust investment plans and trans-national initiative for boosting cross-border trade activities. It is essential that all provinces get equitable benefits, opportunities and budgets for strengthening their infrastructure and trade activities along-with IT."
In terms of the current scheme CPEC will include construction of cross border OFC (optical fiber) system between China and Pakistan for international connectivity of voice/data traffic and provision of seamless GSM coverage along KKH for the proposed Gawadar - Kashighar Economic Corridor in Gilgit Baltistan.
More tax burden on non-filers in budget: Haroon
KARACHI (Staff Reporter): Special Assistant to Prime Minister on Finance Haroon Akhtar Khan has said that there will be no new tax in the upcoming budget and the revenue generation will focus on increasing burden on transactions by non-filers. Addressing the pre-budget seminar 2018/2019, organised by the Southern Regional Committee of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Pakistan (ICAP), he said the rates would be increased for non-filers of income tax returns in order to compel them to get registration. He said that introduction of valuations for immovable properties were major initiatives of Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) which also forced this sector to get registered with the tax authorities. He vowed that the government will not tolerate people living luxury life while remaining outside the tax net. He said that data has been gathered through third-party sources and FBR was working on it. Haroon Akhtar hoped the GDP growth will be around 6 percent.
“This major breakthrough has been realised through reducing energy shortfall,” he said.
He said that the country was facing difficult economic situation due to widening of current account deficit. However, there are many other economic indicators, which are portraying improvement in the economy, he added.
On the occasion, ICAP President Riaz A Rehman Chamdia said that the revenue collection of past five years was impressive. “However, there is need to focus on broadening the tax base,” he said.
ICAP president said that broadening of tax base and equitable tax system were major areas of the proposals.
There is need to review the existing taxation system for collecting tax through adopting best international practices that are suitable to our environment. “A growth enabled economy requires efficient tax system and credible tax administration,” he added.
He said that ICAP is committed to support a sustainable Pakistan economy. The ICAP president also offered to support the government’s efforts in broadening the tax base and evolving equitable taxation system.
Pama for cutting input tax rate on tractors
LAHORE (Staff Reporter): Pakistan Automotive Manufacturers Association (Pama) has requested the govt to reduce the rate of input tax on tractors, which is resulting in liquidity crunch affecting the tractor industry. The rate of sales tax charged on sales of tractor is 5%, as against, components purchased locally as well as imported required to manufacture tractors are subjected to sales tax at the rate of 17%. This has resulted in accumulation of legitimate refunds with FBR which currently stands at Rs2.4b approximately for the industry. Due to this, the entire tractor industry is facing liquidity crunch affecting the trust of foreign investors/shareholders. "Presently, Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) have to suffer substantial financial burden due to lengthy reviewing process of FBR and incomplete documents/details submitted by small vendors," stated Abdul Waheed Khan, DG PAMA. "As sales tax on imports is directly collected by the govt at the import stage and no other intermediaries are involved, therefore it is advisable for the authorities to implement this measure," he suggested.
"We propose that the sales tax be eliminated or rationalized on purchase of imported tractor component as there is no point of collection of sales tax by Government at the time of import and subsequently giving refund for the same," said DG PAMA.