The federal government on Friday slapped at least Rs383 billion worth of additional taxes – and nearly 70% are regressive in nature and highly inflationary aimed at achieving the Rs5.829-trillion tax target.
The single largest tax measure is Rs1 tax on every call lasting more than three minutes, 10 paisa tax on every SMS and Rs5 tax on use of each 1 gigabyte (GB) of internet to generate Rs100 billion additional taxes.
Similarly, the government has also imposed 17% sales tax on import of crude oil to generate another Rs38 billion in taxes. However, the crude oil import tax estimates appeared on the lower end.
The government has imposed new taxes on almost every important consumable and daily use item, including sugar that will now be taxed at a retail stage and its price will go up by about Rs7 per kilogram. However, the industrialists and stock market players have been given relief in their tax burden.
“The government has proposed Rs383 billion gross revenue measures and has also given Rs119 billion tax concessions,” said Chaudhry Mohammad Tariq, Member Inland Revenue Policy of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) while briefing media about new tax measures. Tariq said that the net new revenue measures were Rs264 billion for fiscal year 2021-22, starting from July 1.
Similarly, the government has reduced the capital gains tax on stock market to 12.5% that will cause Rs2 billion revenue loss.
The government has abolished 12 types of withholding taxes that will cause Rs15 billion loss. These are related to banking transactions, air travel, stock exchange, CNG stations, petroleum products, international credit card transactions and extraction of minerals and sale of spices.
The government has proposed to collect Rs242 billion through enforcement measures. The government would collect additional Rs160 billion at domestic taxes stage without resorting to additional taxes. Another Rs82 billion are assured to be collected on account of customs duties-related administrative measures.
The government has promised the IMF that it would collect Rs30 billion on account of arrears stuck up at various stages while rationalising its earlier figure of Rs70 billion. It also hopes to collect Rs20 billion through audit and another Rs20 billion through enhanced monitoring of sales tax. It would collect Rs20 billion by installing track and trace system, also watering down its earlier wish of showing Rs50 billion under this head.
The collection of Rs50 billion has been shown under the head of integration of point of Sales of the retail shops. In customs, Pakistan has assured the IMF that it would generate Rs35 billion by curbing smuggling of tea, tyres textile and petroleum products. (The Express Tribune)