It is quite commendable and appreciable to note that transfers from the federal government to provinces of Punjab, Sindh, Khyber Pukhtoonkhwah and Balochistan out of the Divisible Poll of Taxes have increased as much as 50 per cent during four years of the incumbent regime under the extended National Finance Commission Award. 

According to the reports in the media, the federal government on coming into power during the fiscal 2012-13 had transferred Rs 1.299 trillion out of the pool of divisible resources and transferred Rs 465 trillion in 2013-14, Rs 1.593 trillion in 2014-15 , Rs 1.905 trillion in 2015-16 and Rs 1.996 trillion during financial year 2016-17. 

The 7th National Finance Commission Award, under which taxes collected by the federal government are distributed among the four provinces as per the formula laid down therein, had expired in financial year 2014-15 after completing its stipulated five years term and since then award is being extended for interim periods through the presidential ordinances pending finalization and announcement of the new NFC Award for next five years when it is enforced. 

Quite obviously, substantial increase in the provincial share in the divisible pool of resources resulted in the enhanced taxes collection by the apex tax authority Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) which managed to collect Rs 3.367 trillion during the last financial year showing as high as 73 per cent more over financial year 2012-13. 

The taxes collection and subsequently share of the provinces in the resources so collected can go still higher if the taxes exemptions are kept on the minimum side to very essential and unavoidable and tax net is increased still more through accelerated and determined efforts by bringing those sectors of national economy which are either not paying or much less than due taxes into the tax net at the earliest. 

M.Z.RIFAT,  

Lahore, April 1.