Commercial importers, traders require filing annual returns, maintain complete record

Commercial importers, traders require filing annual returns, maintain complete record

KARACHI: Commercial importers and individual traders are required to file income tax return and maintain complete records of transactions, a tax analyst said.

Murtaza Qurban, Executive Manager, EY Ford Rhodes highlighted the application of minimum tax on commercial importers and individual traders in an event recently organized by Karachi Tax Bar Association (KTBA).

He said that commercial importers / traders are now required to prepare financial statements / accounts. Further filing of return of income is also mandatory instead of statement under section 115 of Income Tax Ordinance, 2001.

Maintenance of proper and complete records (earlier no expense was being claimed therefore there was no risk of disallowance of expenses), he said.

The tax authorities may raise questions regarding transfer pricing (earlier tax paid on assessed value of goods was final tax – largely applicable on multinationals). While, payment of advance tax under section 147 in respect will also applicable, he added.

H e said that the Finance Act, 2019, however, again introduced amendments through which tax collection at import stage is made minimum tax instead of final tax. As a result of this change, Commercial Importers are now required to compute their financial results for comparison of tax on profits with minimum tax.

He said that sale by commercial Importer would still not be subject to withholding tax in terms of section 153(5) where tax at import stage has already been collected.
Two regimes of minimum tax would be applicable:

Under section 113

Under section 148

If minimum tax liability under 148 > minimum tax liability under 113 > tax liability under Normal Tax Regime. Carry forward of minimum tax under 113 would be available, he questioned.

Alternative Corporate Tax would also be applicable. Thereafter, carryforward under ACT will be available, if ACT under section 113C is > minimum tax under section 148, he further questioned?

Similar to the implications as discussed above, contractors and service providers would also be required to prepare financial statements / accounts and file return of income.

However, one major problem that is being faced is that since tax deductible under section 153(1)(b) and (c) is minimum tax, whether it would be computed on actual receipts or its accrual would also entail such income to be offered under MTR. Specially in case of companies, where accrual method of accounting is mandatorily followed, he said.

If tax under MTR is worked out on accrual basis, actual receipts would also be subjected to withholding of tax, which would not be refundable being minimum tax. In other words, such tax may be lapsed if income in subsequent year is less than the prior year, he added.

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