LAHORE - The Regional Tax Office Lahore I was not accepting applications for filing of refunds from 5 sectors covered under SRO 1125 since October 04, 2013.

All Regional Tax Offices in Pakistan except Lahore region are processing refund applications under Rule 33 of the Sales Tax Refund Rules whereby the assesses file Sales Tax Refund request 15 days after the end of the relevant month and the refunds are processed accordingly.

The delay in release of huge funds that runs into billions has triggered serious liquidity crunch for the exporters and manufacturers that might lead to closure of several industrial units. The Chairman FBR should take realistic view of the matter and direct RTO Lahore to ensure early refunds of sales tax and Income Tax of the 5 sectors covered by SRO 1125 who were facing severe hardships.

The businessmen said that the process to get refunds is so lengthy and cumbersome that sometimes takes months for a manufacturer or an exporter to get his own money refunded.

LCCI President Ejaz Mumtaz said that the businessmen were bearing huge financial cost on their own hard earned stuck-up money, therefore, the FBR Chairman should look into the matter and ensure early release of Sales Tax and Income Tax refunds.

The LCCI President said that the businessmen have now started feeling the pinch as the businesses were already in deep troubles.

He said that it was a matter of concern that despite clear instructions of Federal Finance Minister Ishaq Dar to release Sales Tax and Income Tax refunds at the earliest, concerned officials are not accepting the applications for filing of refunds from 5 sectors covered under SRO 1125 creating hurdles for the business doing people.

He urged the Chairman Federal Board of Revenue to take notice of the situation and direct the Regional Tax Office Lahore to accept applications for filing of refunds without any argue.