ISLAMABAD: Chairman FBR Nisar Muhammad Khan has said Federal Board of Revenue has achieved an impressive 19% revenue growth during the first nine months of current fiscal year due to better policies and administrative measures
adopted to broaden the tax base.

"The revenue growth is well on track this year and we are positive about achieving the revenue collection target set for the year," he said while answering questions from participants of 104th National Management Course during their visit to FBR House here Tuesday.

Earlier, the visiting participants of NMC were given detailed briefings by Dr. Muhammad Iqbal, Member SPR&S/IT FBR and Nasir Masroor Ahmad, Member Customs FBR on the
working, issues, challenges and strategic vision of Inland Revenue Service
and Pakistan Customs Service respectively.

The Chairman said last year had been quite productive for broadening of tax base and revenue generation as FBR had been able to receive over one million tax returns which were about 750,000 three years ago. "We have taken several administrative and revenue measures, including increased cost of doing business and imposition of withholding tax on bank transactions for non-filers and dialogue with small and medium traders to improve tax compliance," he said.

To a question, he said a large number of Pakistanis were paying taxes on various accounts such as use of mobile phone and purchase of household items falling in GST regime. However, there were a large number of those who were earning a lot but not paying taxes commensurate to their income levels. "These are the people we are aiming to bring into tax net through a tax system that is simple, fair and transparent," he said.

Responding to another question about Voluntary Tax Compliance Scheme, Nisar Muhammad Khan said the scheme was launched at the behest of traders who
wanted to become part of tax net to avoid paying 0.6% withholding tax on their bank transactions. "Under the scheme, we have received around 8,000 tax returns and around Rs 15 billion taxes have also been contributed through the withholding tax on bank transactions during the last seven months," he said.

To another question, the Chairman said FBR had a zero tolerance policy towards corruption which was being curtailed by reducing monopoly of officers on business processes, removal of discretionary powers and enhancement of accountability at all levels.

Later, Muhammad Ismael Qureshi, Rector National School of Public Policy, thanked FBR Chairman for hosting and briefing the participants of NMC. Commemorative shields were also exchanged on the occasion.