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ISLAMABAD: The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) will start monitoring actual production of sugar from November 2020 through installation of high-tech video cameras to be installed on the production lines of around 85 sugar mills.

Sources told Business Recorder here on Saturday that the FBR would be able to check tax evasion in the sugar mills with the help of video analytics technology.

The cost of installation of the high-tech video cameras would be borne by the sugar mills, whereas, the running cost would be borne by the FBR.

According to the sources, the FBR would ensure that the high-tech video cameras must be installed on the production lines of around 85 sugar mills before the start of the crushing season in November.

The production of specified goods, manufactured in Pakistan, shall be monitored through intelligent video surveillance, and video analytics by installation of equipments including video cameras, sensors, etc, at production lines, as are approved by the board for real-time collection of data that shows production through object detection and object counting; transmission of data to central control room at the FBR on real-time basis, storage and archiving of data; detection of unexpected stops; quantitative analyses of productions, and data analytics for required legal actions.

The manufacturer of specified goods shall make all production facilities available for installation of the system and allow access to the vendor and the FBR for routine operations, inspection and maintenance; not supply any goods without routing them through the intelligent video analytics, be responsible to pay the fee as agreed with the vendor; be responsible for smooth functioning, protection and security of the intelligent video analytics.

In order to operationalise Video Analytics Rules, 2020 on sugar sector, a memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed by the FBR with the Pakistan Sugar Mills Association in a recent ceremony held in the FBR (HQ), Islamabad.

Dr Muhammad Ashfaq Ahmed, Member (IR-Operations), FBR and Iskandar Khan, Central President, PSMA signed the MoU on behalf of their respective organisations.

The FBR has recently issued Video Analytics Rules, 2020 vide SRO 889(I)/2020, dated 21 September 2020 for electronic monitoring of specified goods.

Dr Ashfaq Ahmed remarked that the FBR believed in minimising the contact between tax collector and taxpayer to ensure ease of doing business.

For this purpose, video analytics technology has been introduced to monitor the production of specified goods through high-tech video cameras to be installed on the production lines of the sugar industry.

The introduction of new technology will enable the FBR to receive real-time video analytics data of production from the manufacturing sites, and use it for tax collection purpose.

The FBR has made it compulsory for manufacturers of dozens of locally-produced products to install video surveillance equipment at the manufacturing premises for electronic monitoring of production of finished items on real-time basis.

The FBR has further stated that no person engaged in manufacturing of specified goods shall remove the production from its business premises unless it has undergone the process of intelligent video surveillance.

The FBR said that the manufacturers of specified goods shall buy video monitoring equipments only from the authorised vendor.

No manufacturer of the specified goods shall buy video monitoring equipment, which is not authorised or approved by the board.