Our staff reporter

LAHORE

High tax-to-GDP ratio is vital for rapid economic growth of the country and everyone should pay their due tax liabilities in national interest. Respect and facilities should be extended to taxpayers to attract non-taxpayers to come in tax net.

LCCI former Vice President Kashif Anwar, who is also the member of FBR tax committee, deliberating on WHT issues, said that everyone should pay tax and if the government wants to increase revenue and tax base, it should adopt the policy of guidance, education and facilitation.

“No one wants to come in the tax net because of many reasons. The first question of unregistered person is regarding the benefit of coming in the tax net. There is a large number of retailers who are not in tax net and can contribute a big amount of tax,” he said adding that the retailers who are registered in income tax are not considered registered in sales tax, they have to pay extra 2pc sales tax on their purchases, however they are paying additional sales tax in their electricity bills.

He informed that law says they are not supposed to get themselves registered with sales tax if their annual electricity bill is less than Rs.6,00,000 annually. The additional sales tax makes their purchase expensive form the unregistered traders.

He said that the job of increasing the tax base is of the Federal Board of Revenue and not of those who are already in tax net.

The persons who register themselves with the FBR are squeezed by complicated policies; he said adding that the rate of sales and income tax is increasing day by day.

Regarding refunds, Kashif Anwar highlighted that there is no refund of withheld tax either income or sales tax and if one asks for refund, he has to face the consequences of audits.

He said that tax payers are facing difficulties and in such circumstances, who will come in the tax net when unregistered persons see the complexities of tax payers while persons out of tax net are very happy as no policy is applicable to them. Respect and facilities should be given to tax payers to convince non tax payers to come in tax net.