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Aurangzeb pledges to broaden tax base

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KARACHI: Finance Minister Muhammad Aurangzeb has reiterated the government’s resolve to expand the tax base by aggressively pursuing the untaxed and undertaxed sectors.

In a meeting with a delegation of the Paki­stan Business Council (PBC) on Tuesday, the minister stated that the government is more determined than ever to broaden the tax base.

He also shared the progress on digitalisation and the plans to restructure the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), saying that the government is putting a lot of emphasis on this matter.

On smuggling and the misuse of the transit trade, the minister info­rmed the meeting that significant changes are planned in customs laws to address both these issues.

According to a press release of the PBC, a more detailed meeting between the FBR and the PBC would follow.

During the meeting, the PBC delegation discussed its proposals for the forthcoming budget, which FBR chairman Malik Amjed Zubair Tiwana also attended.

According to PBC chief executive Ehsan Malik, the delegation emphasised the need to use the upcoming federal budget to introduce long-term fiscal policies to allow businesses to invest, create wealth, generate jobs and produce higher tax revenues instead of burdening it with a disproportionate share of taxes and thwarting its scale.

Mr Malik stressed the need to broaden the tax base by mining the significant amount of data already available and increasing the incentive to formalise by raising advance taxes collected from utility bills of non-taxpayers.