The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) is in the process of establishing exact ownership of 160,000 foreign bank accounts purportedly owned by Pakistani nationals abroad through Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), it is learnt. Sources told Business Recorder here on Saturday that the FBR is pursuing the matter with the OECD under exchange of information provisions and will also issue notices in a phase-wise manner to the owners of these un-disclosed foreign bank accounts of Pakistanis abroad, sources added.
When contacted, FBR Member Inland Revenue Policy Dr Hamid Attiq Sarwar told Business Recorder: "We have received information through OECD network from 26 countries participating in OECD exchange of information network. The data was shared about 3 months back and the fact was unveiled by the finance minister in his post-budget speech. In many accounts the amounts are small but some of the accounts contain large transactions. We are in the process of establishing exact ownership of accounts through the OECD and also pursuing the identified accounts through notices. For exchange of information from OECD it is a prerequisite that the information be kept secret otherwise we won't get next instalment of information".
During review of Finance Supplementary (Second Amendment) Bill, 2019 by Senate Standing Committee on Finance, FBR Member told the committee that the government received details of over 152,000 accounts from 26 foreign jurisdictions and the amendment in the law was proposed to enable tax authorities for taking speedy action on the information before the money is shifted from those accounts.