FBR signs a MoU with Pakistan Tax Bar Association

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Raza Kazmi

ISLAMABAD: In a historic development Federal Board of Revenue has taken a watershed initiative to ensure facilitation in filing of tax return by new taxpayers for Broadening of Tax Base by signing a memorandum of understanding with Pakistan Tax Bar at FBR (HQ) on Feb 07, 2022. FBR is all set to launch yet another out of box digital intervention for Broadening of Tax Base through definite information obtained about non-filers.
FBR has already collected information about assets and expenditures of the persons outside the tax net from various sources. This information shall be made available to persons outside tax net through Tax Asaan Portal.
Under the MoU, Pakistan Tax Bar will share the lists of qualified and willing members of Tax bar to file tax return of the new taxpayers. FBR will make this list of tax consultants available to new taxpayers wanting to file tax returns and will facilitate this by payment of fixed fee for filing of return to the tax consultants. The facility will be purely voluntary and a taxpayer will have an option to avail this free of cost facility or hire his/her own tax consultant.
Broadening of tax Base is a key priority of the government and this facility of filing of tax return is an unprecedented step for facilitation of new tax payers and thus maximize tax compliance in the country.
Meanwhile, Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has categorically denied the insinuation made in the story published in the Business Recorder on February 8, 2022 with the title “Yet another ‘Finance Bill’ on its way?” FBR has clarified that the review of the tax laws is an ongoing exercise which FBR undertakes in routine. FBR is currently grappled with harmonization of the existing tax laws into IR-Code which would be a major milestone as it would not only add to administrative convenience in the enforcement of tax laws but also contribute to ease of doing business.
It is also added that 7th Review Mission under the IMF Program is scheduled in March, 2022. Any changes that might be required as a result of the ongoing exercise could very conveniently be given effect at the budget time through the Finance Act, 2022.