ISLAMABAD -  The Islamabad Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ICCI) has called upon the government to provide hefty relief to the common man in the upcoming budget .

ICCI President Khalid Iqbal Malik said that high tax rates and large number of taxes in Pakistan were putting more burdens on the common man and reducing his purchasing power due to which business activities were also suffering. He stressed that the government should make significant cut in taxes in the forthcoming budget that would provide relief to the general public and facilitate better growth of trade and industrial activities.

He said that high rate of GST in Pakistan was major cause of inflation and high cost of doing business. He said that the government should bring down GST to single digit level and reduce number of withholding taxes in the new budget . He said the government’s major reliance on indirect taxes was creating problems for the people and stressed that the government should focus on direct taxes in the forthcoming budget .

He said that complicated taxation system and high tax rates were promoting the culture of tax evasion while the genuine taxpayers were also facing problems. He emphasized that the FBR should focus on simplification of tax system that would help in promoting tax culture and improving tax revenue of the country.

He said Pakistan needed huge local and foreign investment to execute CPEC projects. He said an efficient, simple and transparent tax system was the need of the hour to attract more investment in the country. He said that ICCI was the premier representative body of the business community of this region and if the FBR has any complaint against any local taxpayer, it should take ICCI fully on board before taking any action so that tax issues could be resolved with joint efforts. He urged that new budget should focus on broadening the tax base instead of putting more burdens on the existing taxpayers.