Refund should have no nexus with revenue targets: FTO

ISLAMABAD: The office of Federal Tax Ombudsman (FTO) has advised Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) to set its targets rationally and refunds should have no nexus with revenue targets.
“To link accountability to performance, compensation for delayed refund be ensured as delay has its own cost,” the FTO office said in its suggestion for budget 2019/2020.
Refunds data should be placed on website, showing chronological sequence of status and settlement.
It further said that the collection of Customs duty on challans, in advance, for the sake of targets, should be stopped. It also said that regulatory duties kill economic activity.
Instead of more focus on the rates of taxes, FBR should pay more emphasis on stimulation of economic activity.
Recommendations of separate Customs and IR Board given in ISAF Container scandal should be implemented, it said.
The above mentioned suggestions were sent to Chairman FBR with the note that FTO’s office regards proposals worthwhile to be considered at the time of next budgetary exercise.
As part of annual consultation to provide well thought-out advice, from a common citizen as well as expert perspective, to the FTO and FBR, meeting of the Rawalpindi/Islamabad based members of Advisory Committee was held in the Conference Room of the FTO office on December 27, 2018.
The Federal Tax Ombudsman welcomed the participants and briefed them about the purpose of meeting which was to give recommendations for improvement in system and proposals for next budget.
The conference was attended by Salman Nabi, Former Chairman, National Tariff Commission, Muhammad Sulaiman Khan, Ex-Member Customs and Former Advisor FTO Secretariat, Zaheer-u-Din Dar, Consultant, Zikria A. Zia, Resident Director AGE Cables, Muhammad Siddique, Former Advisor, FTO Secretariat, Najeeb R. Abbasi, Advocate High Court, Shabaz Rana, Economic Correspondent, The Express Tribune, Muhammad Azeem Siddiqi, Bureau Chief, Khyber News, M. Naeem Siddiqi, Chairman ST, IT and FBR Affairs Subcommittee.
Tariq Ahad Nawaz, Advisor (Research) FTO Office, apprised the audience about the efforts made by the office of the FTO in the area of recommendations sent to FBR for streamlining the systemic issues and performance of the FTO office.
In the open house discussion, the debate resulted in some very useful recommendations for improvement of the system.

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