THE Federal Board of Revenue has not only increased the number of tax payers in Pakistan from 0.5 per cent in the past four years, but it has also single-handedly managed to reduce the Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in Pakistan by 80 per cent, most of which has been reduced due to the flight of investment from telecommunication companies which were incorrectly targeted by FBR for collection of incorrect taxes.
It is worth mentioning here that the telecommunications sector is one of the biggest payers of taxes to the Government of Pakistan and one of FBR’s biggest customers.
But after the way the Federal Board of Revenue and NAB started printing obnoxious and inconsistent articles in the media about the non-payment of this new “imaginary tax” a few months back, it resulted in the removal of $179 million in foreign investment from the telecommunications sector.
This is not the first time that the Federal Board of Revenue is acting like this. All the people who pay taxes know that the Federal Board of Revenue is a spineless organisation that only puts its customers under pressure for collecting extra taxes.
It is the job of the Federal Board of Revenue to increase the number of tax payers in Pakistan, which stands at only 0.5 per cent since 2002; ironically in a country that is the sixth-most populous nation of the world.
When the Federal Board of Revenue deviates from its main role and starts putting real tax payers under pressure, then it only results in the removal of investment or non-payment of taxes in future by the tax payers to avoid undue pressure from the FBR.
S. K. BASEER