This is apropos a Business Recorder editorial “’Serious issues’ in payment of refunds” carried by the newspaper yesterday. The newspaper has concluded its argument by saying, among other things, that “These are very important issues which will need some very serious looking into; and very urgently at that. The process of FBR overhaul has clearly been delayed for far too long and all the time more things that are wrong with it keep coming out. The government must give this issue its most serious, and undivided, attention.”
The FBR and energy sector are the two areas that need government’s utmost attention. Reforms in FBR must be supplemented by a countrywide awareness campaign aimed at successfully persuading people to pay taxes honestly. James Madison, the fourth President of the US, had famously said: “The power of taxing people and their property is essential to the very existence of the government.” In the case of Pakistan, however, successive governments go an extra mile: timely refund payments never take place, which causes, among other things, a setback to efforts aimed at fuelling economy.
Mohsin Syed (Karachi)
Copyright Business Recorder, 2021