ISLAMABAD -  Number of taxpayers in Pakistan has increased to 1.216 million during the year 2016, which has shown an increase of 50 percent during last four years.

Number of taxpayers has enhanced to 12,16,614 during the year 2016 from 7,69,892 of 2013 showing an increase of 50 percent, said Finance Minister Ishaq Dar at launching ceremony of 4th general tax directory, which consist more than 17,000 pages. The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) few days backed launched the tax directory of parliamentarians.

On the occasion, Dar said that Pakistan is only fourth country of the world, which is publishing tax directory every year from last four years. “Issuing of tax directory will help in expanding tax base of the country,” he maintained. He further said that tax collection has increased to Rs3,362 billion during previous financial year 2016-17 from Rs1,946 billion of the year 2013 when incumbent government took charge. The government has also abolished tax exemptions given for different sectors to enhance revenues, he said and added that increase in tax revenues is imperative for promoting development and defence programmes of the country.

The minister vowed to take the country’s GDP growth to 6 percent during ongoing fiscal year 2017-18, which remained at 5.3 percent during last year. “Pakistan has recently signed agreements with Switzerland and Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) to stop corruption and tax evasion,” he said. He lauded the FBR’s team for their efforts for publishing tax directory. He called upon the FBR’s officials to contribute their best to achieve current year tax collection targets.