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ISLAMABAD: The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has been able to collect Rs 300 billion against the target of Rs 243 billion during July 2020 due to higher sale of cement, automobiles and 20 percent release of PSDP fund for the first quarter of current fiscal year.

An official of the finance ministry said that 20 percent release of PSDP fund in July 2019 for the first quarter of current fiscal year contributed to increase in taxes as various taxes are collected at the time of release of a development project. The collection of withholding taxes from contracts (10 percent) and supplies (4.5 percent) have increased during July 2020 due to release of PSDP funds during this period. Additionally, he said that sale of cement also increased in the month of July 2020 due to increase in construction activity and sale of cars increased following decline in discount rate.

The FBR has provisionally collected Rs 300 billion during the first month of current fiscal year, July 2020, against the assigned target of Rs 243 billion, reflecting a growth of 23 percent. The FBR's provisional collection 0f Rs 300 billion was higher by 16% from Rs 262 billion for the same month a year before.

Sources said that the domestic sales tax collection (gross) stood at Rs 65 billion during July 2020 against Rs 49 billion in July 2019, reflecting an increase of 31.2 percent. Thus, the domestic sales tax collection has improved during first month of current fiscal year. The strict enforcement/administrative measures and improvement in compliance also resulted in increase in revenue collection during July 2020, sources contended.

The FBR has also launched an unprecedented crackdown on corruption dismissing and suspending about a dozen officers and officials during the month of July 2020.

Pakistan Customs has made historic seizures of smuggled goods during the month of July 2020 including Gutka, betel nuts, skimmed milk, cigarettes, Iranian diesel, tyres, non-duty paid vehicles, narcotics, cloth, gold and foreign currency amounting to Rs.3.8 billion. This is 143 percent increase in the value of seized goods as compared to the seizures amounting to Rs.1.5 billion million made during July 2019.

According to FBR officials, the Board performed well during first month of the current financial year, ie, July 2020. Against the assigned revenue target of Rs.243 billion, the FBR has collected Rs.300 billion overshooting the target by a staggering Rs.53 billion. The Inland Revenue (income tax, sales tax and federal excise duty) overshot the target by Rs. 52 billion, whereas the Customs Wing exceeded the target by Rs.5 billion. In July 2019, net collection of Inland Revenue had remained Rs.236 billion.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020