ISLAMABAD: The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) is all set for today’s maiden meeting of the Tax Reforms Commission (TRC).
Keeping the importance of the meeting in view despite holiday, the FBR has directed all members to ensure their presence and availability at Headquarters for provision of any required assistance to the meeting. Finance Minster Ishaq Dar will chair the meeting. A well-placed source at FBR Friday told this scribe that the maiden meeting of TRC would discuss and deliberate on heavy agenda including improvement of the tax system, provision of efficient machinery for the collectors of all kinds of three taxes and other items. “Both the business community and tax administration have high hopes and expectations with the outcome of today’s meeting because reforms set by the meeting will set future line of action of the tax system in the country,” the source added.
The source further revealed that both the Customs and Inland Revenue departments had different viewpoint on the proposal of appointment of inland revenue officers at Sea and Dry Ports for better and improved monitoring system. Customs Duty and Inland Revenue including Income tax and sales tax are collected from Dry Ports and Sea Port,” the source added, saying: “90 percent proportionately inland revenue is collected from ports, therefore, the commission will also deliberate on the proposal regarding appointment of inland officers at ports. “Inland Department is of the view that it is a welcoming step whereas Customs department is not happy over this proposal because it would increase intervention of inland officers at Ports,” the source observed.
The TRC was constituted on September 25 with a mandate to compile recommendations on tax reforms within 120 days. TRC was given mandate to review and rationalization of direct and indirect taxes, customs tariff rationalization, creation of border force to deal with illegal movement of persons and goods across the international borders. Except Chairman FBR, all members of the commission hail from private sector. The TRC is mandated to deliberate upon continuation of single stage General Sales Tax (GST) or put in place multiple stages GST, granting autonomy to the FBR and establishing Border Force to curb smuggling. The Commission may avail the services of any experts on need basis.
The following are the members of the Commission: Masood Naqvi, FCA, Chairman and its members including Senator Usman Saifullah, Mian Abdul Manan, MNA, Representative of traders, Bashir Ali Muhammad, Industrialist, Chairman, Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry or his nominee, President Karachi Chamber of Commerce and Industry or his nominee, President Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry or his nominee, President Peshawar Chamber of Commerce and Industry or his nominee, President Quetta Chamber of Commerce and Industry or his nominee, President Institute of Chartered Accountants of Pakistan, President Institute of Cost and Management Accountants, Mirza Qamar Baig, Ex Federal Secretary, Professor Azhar Akram, Academician, President All Pakistan Tax Bar Association, Ashfaq Tola, FCA, Abid Shahban, Advocate Supreme Court, Farrukh Jawad Pani, Advocate Supreme Court Ramzan Bhatti (Customs), Farooq Malik (IRS) and FBR Chairman.