LAHORE - The Federal Board of Revenue can generate revenue equal to the total volume of federal budget through re-imposition of wealth tax and implementation of agri tax. The FBR revenue collection through wealth tax reached the figure of over Rs40 billion about 10 years ago when it was suspended by the Musharraf regime to protect the elite. And if this tax is re-imposed the tax department can collect over Rs1.5 trillion, said Federal Revenue Alliance Employees Union central president Mian Abdul Qayyum. Talking to The Nation here Sunday, Mian Qayyum said that tax authorities have crossed the revised tax collection target of Rs1,588 billion, paving way for the release of remaining tranche of $11.3 billion IMF programme which has been halted for 13 months. Credit goes to FBR chairman as well as all 22,000 employees of the FBR including sales tax, income tax, central excise and customs for achieving the revenue target of up to Rs1,590 billion, he said. He greeted the FBR chairman for this achievement and said that the IMF programme of Standby Arrangement (SBA) for Pakistan has been suspended since May 2010 and Islamabad failed to obtain any tranche after the completion of the fifth review. FBR made history by achieving revenue collection target for the first time in history in spite of floods and terrorism, he said. He said that if agriculture sector is brought into the tax net along with the wealth tax then there will be no need to go to the WB, the IMF or any other donor country. This is a step that is long overdue. Given that the feudal landowners remain among the richest of Pakistan, it is an irony that they have, for decades, remained outside the tax net, he said. He stated that only the salaried people are paying the taxes and the government is constantly putting more burden on them due to the flaws in the existing tax system. He added that a large section of landowners in the legislature have consistently been rejecting agri tax. Time has come to change this attitude, he said. The FBR Union central president said that Pakistan is a country that desperately needs revenue. Many of the problems we face today stem from this. It is time that the tax net was widened. Apart from agri-tax, it must also be ensured that industrialists and others with sizeable assets do not slip escape the tax net, he underlined. He informed that the work in relation to the imposition of levy on wealth was completed before the budget. He said that legislative work with regard to re-introduction of wealth tax was completed before the budget but the elite and trade mafia became hurdle in the way of its imposition. He asked the govt to declare agriculture an industry, as in this way, farmers can easily be brought into tax net. He recommended the govt to declare the national identity card of every citizen as an NTN. Through this the number of taxpayers will automatically reach over 10 million. He proposed the government to declare amnesty for black money after imposing 2 to 3 percent tax on it, as due to BTB the account holders are withdrawing their black money from banks. Following the amnesty the govt can generate trillions of rupees while banks business will also flourish, as the money will start to return from foreign accounts, he added. He also suggested the govt to give back FBR its autonomous status as was announced in 2007 act, as it is still in the clutches of finance division and revenue division and due to this employees promotions are held. He demanded the formation of the FBR foundation, stressing the need for sports complex, housing society, medical complex and other welfare-oriented work to facilitate workers. He said that the FBR fulfilled its commitment to bring borrowing from SBP to zero at the end of the fourth quarter by paying back Rs156 billion. He said that it was the condition of the IMF under the $11.3 billion SBA programme that Pakistan would have to bring down borrowing from SBP to zero by end of every quarter of the fiscal year. The IDBs loan of $160 million was dropped because the government managed to achieve its FBRs tax target of Rs1,588 billion.