FBR warns taking legal action against fabricated tobacco license news publication

ISLAMABAD: The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) on Wednesday said it has right to take legal action against fabricated news publication regarding grant of track and trace tobacco license.

“The FBR reserves the right to take legal action against publication of such fabricated and concocted news report,” said a statement.

The FBR issued a strong rebuttal appearing in press and circulating on Social media regarding issuance of Invitation for License (IFL) FOR “Electronic Monitoring Track and trace System for Tobacco Products.”

FBR has clarified that the news item is totally baseless and allegations leveled against the Chairman FBR are basically an effort to sabotage fair and open process of licensing in order to give benefit to tax evaders and illicit traders in tobacco industry.

The news item is negated on basis of following facts:

The IFL has been issued under section 40C of the Sales Tax Act, 1990 and the Sales Tax Rules, 2006.

The amendment in the Ruleseere made which were issued much before appointment of Syed Shabbar Zaidi as Chairman, FBR who took charge as chairman FBR on 10.05.2019 which is two and half months after the issuance of the Licensing Rules, 2019.

A consultant having an international experience and credentials was also hired well before the issuance of IFL after following a transparent process to seek guidance and expert advice with a view to make the process fair and fool proof.

The IFL was published in local as well as international newspapers in order to make it more transparent and open for all the solution providers. The IFL was also placed on PPRA website and all PPRA Rules are being followed in letter and spirit.

After the issuance of IFL more than 20 obtained bidding/Licensing documents. No company has submitted the Licensing documents till date as the closing date for submission of documents is 20th September. Hence the question of awarding of license to any company does not arise.

There is no loss of revenue of the Government of Pakistan as reported in the news item, the FBR clarified.

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