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ISLAMABAD: The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has not approached the traders’ community to address their concerns over the harsh provisions of the Tax Laws (Third Amendment) Ordinance 2021.

All Pakistan Anjuman-e-Tajiran (APAT) Chairman Ajmal Baloch told Business Recorder that protest would be lodged against the promulgation of the Tax Laws (Third Amendment) Ordinance 2021 outside the FBR Headquarters on September 29, 2021.

In this first phase, there would be no shutter down of shops, but protest before the FBR Headquarters.

However, this protest can be converted into a strike call and a shutter down.

Comments on Tax Laws (Third Amendment) Ordinance, 2021

It is very unfortunate that the FBR is not ready to listen to the ground realities of the traders and started forced sales tax registration process, he maintained.

He was confident that a large number of traders and retailers would be able to gather outside the FBR Headquarters on September 29 and the FBR would be forced to take back the harsh taxation measures taken under Tax Laws (Third Amendment) Ordinance 2021. Presently, the traders are receiving two kinds of notices across the country.

First, the notices are related to the sales tax registration.

Second, notices for registration with the Point of Sale (POS) system of the FBR.

The discretionary powers of the FBR to register anyone with the POS system are totally unjustified.

The trader community has rejected the harsh provisions of the Tax Laws (Third Amendment) Ordinance 2021. The documentation measures introduced through the presidential ordinance are complicated and it will result in increased penalties on the traders and retailers.

The protest is against the harsh tax policies and complicated and double documentation, which would increase tax evasion and corruption in the country.

Tax Laws (Third Amendment) Ordinance, 2021

Baloch stated that no one from the FBR has approached them for having any kind of negotiations with the trader’s community.

The government has also enhanced extra tax rates on industrial and commercial gas and electricity connections to persons, who are unregistered.

Referring to the Ordinance, Naeem Mir stated that the government has increased the amount of penalty for tier-1 retailers, who are not integrated.

The powers have been given to the FBR to discontinue gas and electricity connections of persons including tier-1 retailers, who are either not registered or if registered not integrated.

Moreover, the government has increased amount of penalty for tier-1 retailers, who are not integrated with the FBR.

The FBR can issue notice to anyone for registration with the POS system and non-compliance would result in heavy penalties on the registered persons.

The trader community and retailers reject all these harsh measures introduced through the said Ordinance.

On September 21, newly-appointed FBR spokesperson Asad Tahir Jappa during an introductory meeting with the media said that the traders’ community were earning huge profits but not ready to deposit their due share in the national kitty.

This attitude of the traders’ community is unjustified and they must be registered and pay the taxes under the law.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2021

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