The Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) here Sunday said that it would welcome any amnesty scheme aimed at broadening of extremely narrow tax base.

LCCI President Sheikh Muhammad Arshad expressed the optimism that the government would fulfill its promise and facilitate the private sector in the larger interest of the economy.

The LCCI president said it was not for the first time that the government was planning to announce tax amnesty scheme, as in the past, country's economic wizards had already given the same kind of solution to overcome economic woes.

Sheikh Muhammad Arshad said the government must not wait for any phenomenon to happen if it calculated that an Amnesty Scheme would help rope in tax evaders and non-filers.

"Once the tax based is broadened to the required levels, the country will get rid of such Amnesty schemes in future, therefore, good intention of the present regime should not be translated wrongly. Anything that ensures relief to existing taxpayers should be welcomed by all and nobody should oppose it," he added.

Sheikh Muhammad Arshad said things went wrong when these were politicized instead of looking it in its true spirit. No doubt, an Amnesty Scheme for non-filers should be the last option but definitely the economic experts of the government had already evaluated it to the maximum, he maintained.

The LCCI President said, "There are no two opinions about it that the ultimate beneficiary will be existing taxpayers because with increase in number of new taxpayers the older ones will be getting more respect and prestige by the government," he added.

He sai the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry was a true representative of the private sector and it believed that being an engine of growth, the business community had every right to have facilitation from the government.