CNIC condition on sales tax transactions deferred till January 2020, traders claim

CNIC condition on sales tax transactions deferred till January 2020, traders claim

The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has announced its decision to defer the implementation of the Computerized National Identity Card (CNIC) condition on sales transactions exceeding Rs50,000 until January 31, 2020.

This announcement follows discussions held between traders’ representatives and officials from the Ministry of Finance and FBR.

Ajmal Bloch, a central leader of traders, disclosed this information on Wednesday following a meeting with finance ministry and FBR officials. The decision comes amidst a two-day strike and protest organized by traders against various tax measures, expressing concerns about the impact on their businesses.

Bloch further stated that the tax authorities had agreed to reduce the tax rate from 1.5 percent to 0.5 percent on turnover up to Rs100 million. Additionally, small traders with turnovers up to Rs100 million would no longer be responsible for deducting withholding tax.

Moreover, the mandatory requirement for sales tax registration based on an annual electricity bill of Rs600,000 has been relaxed to Rs1.2 million, providing relief to a broader segment of businesses.

In response to concerns raised by various sectors, including those with lower profit margins, the tax authorities have committed to reviewing turnover tax policies.

Addressing specific issues within the jewelry sector, Bloch indicated that discussions would be held with the Jewelers Association to address their concerns promptly.

As part of efforts to enhance taxpayer facilitation, a dedicated facilitation desk will be established at the FBR headquarters to address tax-related issues faced by traders. Furthermore, it has been agreed that the tax registration form for traders will be made available in Urdu language, aiming to simplify the process and improve accessibility for stakeholders.

The decision to defer the CNIC requirement and the other concessions offered by the FBR mark a significant development in addressing the grievances of traders and promoting a more conducive business environment.

While these measures are expected to alleviate immediate concerns, stakeholders continue to emphasize the importance of ongoing dialogue and collaboration between the government and the business community to ensure the sustainability and growth of the economy.