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ISLAMABAD: The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has informed the Sugar Advisory Board (SAB) that it has deputed tax officers in all sugar mills for monitoring the production and clearance of the commodity from the mills to ensure accurate payment of taxes including sales tax. Sources told Business Recorder that the issue of monitoring of the sugar mills was discussed during the last meeting of the SAB held at the Ministry of Industries and Production.

According to the sources, the Minister for Industries and Production invited the views of the representatives of the FBR on tax evasion as described by the Provincial Cane Commissioner and the sugar association.

The representative of the FBR denied the stance of the chairman of the sugar mills association that the FBR is victimising the sugar mills.

The industry has informed the SAB that the sugar industry has been continuously victimised by the CCP, the FBR, and the media.

The representative of the FBR briefed that the FBR has imposed section 40B of the Sales Tax Act 1990, therefore, they vigilantly monitoring sugar mills and promptly taking action. In this regard, the representative of the FBR is present in every sugar mill who provide daily production, stocks and sale reports to the field formations, Chief Commissioners and the FBR head office. Subsequently, the production figures provided by the Cane Commissioners are almost the same as are collected by the FBR. Central President Kissan Board of Pakistan is response to the FBR said that some of the mills of Central Punjab are not purchasing sugarcane on proper CPRs (Cane Purchase Receipts) and the Provincial Cane Commissioner has knowledge of these mills, therefore, the FBR must check why they do not issue CPRs on net payments, which causes huge tax evasion. He agreed with the chairman PSMA that middlemen must be abolished, but this can only be achieved, if the millers deny purchasing sugarcane from the middlemen. In response, the chair agreed to the need to discourage the middlemen, and stressed that it is the responsibility of the millers as well as the growers to exclude middlemen in these transactions. It has been decided that the FBR will arrange meetings with the Provincial Cane Commissioners regarding tax evasion by some mills, sources added.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021