KARACHI: Amid the persistent political and economic crisis, businessmen urged the PDM government to announce a business-friendly and pro-growth budget for the next fiscal year to put the economy back on the right track.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, Federation of Pakistan Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FPCCI) President Irfan Iqbal Sheikh said the much-needed taxation reforms must be introduced in the budget 2023-24 based on international best practices, principles of simplification of the taxation system and broadening of the tax base.
He said that the taxation system contributes to the national exchequer less than 10pc of GDP, indicating that it is not balanced, broad-based and simplified.
“The taxation system’s heavy reliance on indirect taxation and surcharges is damaging the economy. Taxes are insufficient for debt servicing, defence, social welfare and public-sector development programme,” he added.
Taxpayers lack knowledge of their obligations and major tax policy changes are not supported by the required changes in the administrative framework, he observed, adding that the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) lacks adequate organisational structure, business processes, business-friendly facilities, an institutional budget and a sufficient pool of human resources.
FBR and its staff are not equipped with the current technological developments and the resultant digitalisation, Mr Irfan remarked.
Published in Dawn, May 17th, 2023