KARACHI: Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) has alleged Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) for proposing and manipulating the budget 2021/2022, as the proposals will neither provide relief to business community nor it will help in economic growth.
FPCCI President Mian Nasser Hayatt Maggo in a letter to Prime Minister Imran Khan on Thursday said that the FBR is responsible for introducing anti-business and anti-growth income tax laws in the federal budget 2021/2022. The FBR has sought to enhance discretionary powers of its officers through Section 203A and Section 127 of the Income Tax Ordinance, 2001.
“Well before the budget in February 2021, the FPCCI has proposed simplification of tax system and reduction in tax rates to the prime minister; on which he directed the FBR to look into FPCCI’s recommendations,” Maggo said and added that unfortunately, FPCCI’s recommendations on tax reforms were ignored.
The letter further pointed out that breaking norms, FPCCI president or his nominee had not been given chairmanship of the government budget anomalies and technical committee. Historically, the FPCCI has always helped the government to finalize the budget through addressing most of the anomalies and contradictions.
The FPCCI president said that the technical sub-committee must not comprise of currently practicing tax lawyers and consultants to rule out conflict of interest and ensure neutrality.
It is pointed out that lame clarification being given by the FBR on income tax statute on Section 127 of Income Tax Ordinance, 2001 is illogical and out of sound mind and the FPCCI is of the view that the finance minister must not have given approval to issue such a clarification on Section 127. “This section is also in contradiction to the structure of the Constitution of Pakistan and defies Section 10A of the Constitution blatantly.”
The FPCCI demanded separation of tax judicial system from tax collecting machinery to make it comply with the constitution. This best practice recommendation was also overlooked and the FPCCI demands that this provision must be incorporated in the final draft of the budget.
The FPCCI is also concerned about non-withdrawal of CNIC condition on sale, which continues to hinder business and trade activities and growth within the country.
Maggo said that the proposed budget is full of anomalies and contradictions; so it should be revised in consultation with the business community before being finalized and approved.