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ISLAMABAD: The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), Wednesday, assured textile exporters of restoring speedy payment of sales tax refunds under the “FASTER” system without further delay.

In this regard, the FBR held a meeting with the textile exporters at the FBR headquarters to deliberate and resolve the sales tax-related issues.

Leading textile associations, towel exporters, some individual big companies and spinners, etc, participated in the meeting.

The FBR side was headed by FBR Member Inland Revenue (Operations) and the meeting was attended by the Chief Commissioners of Lahore and Faisalabad and officials of Pakistan Revenue Automation Limited (PRAL).

The FBR officials quoted the example of a textile exporter who got an excessive amount of sales tax refund of 25 percent of the exports and later the unit refunded the excess amount to the Board. The FBR officials informed the exporters that the refund payment orders (RPOs) will be issued for the period of January 2023 for payments to be made in February 2023.

Exporters objected that the payments of sales tax refunds have been delayed by the system since January 2023 due to system glitches and technical issues.

Exporters claimed that the system was temporarily non-operational for the issuance of the refunds under the “FASTER” system even in cases where Annex-H (stock statement) was submitted with the monthly sales tax returns.

The FBR and the exporters discussed the issue of the threshold of 12 percent of sales/ exporters for the purpose of payment of sales tax refunds.

The FBR has conveyed to the exporters that why the value addition of exporters is different from one sector to another. Both sides discussed the issue of value addition to be increased from 10 to 20 percent, whereas, it was mutually agreed on 15 percent.

The FBR has conveyed to the exporters that the threshold of 12 percent of sales/ exports.

The FBR has established a help desk for resolving grievances of exporters for filing of Annex-H (stock statement) of the sales tax return for claiming refunds under the FASTER system.

According to a tweet of the FBR, the FBR is committed to resolving the problems of exporters to enable them to enhance the country’s exports. The board has invited all textile exporters to resolve the refund issues to relieve the cash flow burden, the FBR added.

Additionally, the FBR has not stopped short of taking care of exporters’ liquidity problems and has issued refunds of Rs208 billion during the first seven months of the current financial year as against Rs183 billion during the corresponding period of last year which is 14 percent more than the previous year’s issued refunds.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2023

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