ISLAMABAD     -    Federal Board of Revenue Chairman Shabbar Zaidi has said that FBR is seriously considering to install point of sales invoicing system in all ‘big private hospitals and medical centres’ in the country.

He further said that a campaign for installing point of sales invoicing systems in hospitals and medical centres would start very soon. “Tax collection from such centres is very disproportionate to charges recovered from patients,” he added.

The FBR had already sought details of income of doctors and surgeons associated with Karachi’s major hospitals and health institutes who are “having thriving practice but are not paying taxes on their income”, leaving many practitioners in a quandary about objective behind the move.

The FBR had already issued notification addressing the commissioner inland revenue in Karachi showed a list of 30 private and public hospitals operating in the city to collect data of all health practitioners working in these facilities so their provided details would be “cross-matched” with the claims they made while filing withholding statements.

The FBR officials said that government has wanted to broaden the tax base of the country by bringing non-taxpayers into the tax net. The FBR had given an opportunity to non-taxpayers to file their income tax returns by extending the deadline for one month. The FBR had received as many as 438,564 returns until Sept 30 as against 408,381 returns received over the corresponding month last year, showing an increase of 7.4 percent. The FBR had set a target of 5 million returns in the current fiscal year.

The officials informed that FBR would target the big retailers located in shopping malls, retail chains and stores having 1,000 square feet. The FBR will notify new rules for registration and taxation of big retailers to restore confidence of the small retailers and shopkeepers. The new documentation policy would focus from registration of big retailers to medium-sized retailers in a systematic manner.