ISLAMABAD            -         Adviser to the Prime Minister on Finance and Revenue Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh has directed the FBR to make payment of all Income Tax refunds of up to Rs 50 million in the next couple of weeks while a clear roadmap and strategy may be adopted for the payment of remaining refunds.

“The government has a clear policy that all tax refunds, whether fresh or old, should be paid back without any excuse,” he said while chairing a meeting at the Finance Division. Minister for Industries and Production Muhammad Hammad Azhar, Minister for Power Omar Ayub Khan, Adviser to the Prime Minister on Commerce Abdul Razak Daqood, Special Assistant to the PM on Petroleum Nadeem Babar, Chairman NA Standing Committee on Finance and Revenue Faizullah Kamoka and Chairman FBR Javed Ghani were also present while a number of businessmen from different parts of the country attended the meeting on Zoom.

Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh told the meeting that the government last year paid tax refunds to the tune of Rs 140 billion, nearly double than the amount of refunds paid in FY/18-19. Similarly, the government had also started payment of Income Tax refunds, starting with payment of Income Tax refunds of up to Rs. 18 million in the first phase. It said Income Tax refunds of Rs 50 million will be cleared in the next phase which would be completed within the next two weeks and a total of Rs 40 billion would be spent to pay off all Income Tax refunds of Rs 50 million.

The meeting also discussed issues pertaining to the allocation of power and gas subsidy to the zero-rated and export sector and decided to convene another meeting to build consensus on using the Rs 20 billion kept for the current year for the gas and power subsidy.