Telecom company representatives have voiced their dissatisfaction with the introduction of an import charge on optical fiber cables.
On Friday, the Upper House Standing Committee on Finance, Revenue, and Economic Affairs met at Parliament House for the fourth day in a row, chaired by Senator Saleem Mandviwala.
Officials from the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) told the committee that the matter is under the jurisdiction of the National Telecom Corporation (NTC) and that the duty was imposed to safeguard the local industry.
Representatives from the telecommunications industry also informed the committee of the 15% advance tax. The telecom businesses believed that the advance tax should be decreased from 15% to 10%. According to them, this will have a good influence on the sector.
The committee went over the income tax provisions of the Finance Bill 2022 clause by clause. FBR officials informed the committee. About a new part of the Income Tax Ordinance has been inserted to enable a data-sharing mechanism. It will be shared with the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) in order to broaden the tax net.
Moreover, inconsistencies in the Commissioner’s audit report issuing method have also been corrected. The penalty for failing to submit an income statement by the required date has been expanded. According to FBR authorities, the process of connecting all major merchants to the FBR’s point of sale (PoS) system has already begun.
Similarly, fines for sales tax avoidance by circumventing the PoS system and shutting it down have been enforced. According to the FBR Chairman, the country now has roughly 30,000 first-tier merchants. But we are working hard to integrate them all into the FBR’s PoS system as quickly as feasible.
Moreover, members of the committee criticized the application of withholding tax on international payments made with credit, debit, as well as prepaid cards. They suggested changes to the relevant provision. Simultaneously, on the basis of the aviation department, the Secretary of Railways suggested that the railways be included in Schedule Five for the import of locomotives, passenger cabins, and spare components.
Furthermore, the committee members unanimously urged ministry officials to meet with railway authorities to fix the situation. The Pharmaceutical Association’s representatives told the committee of the sector’s issues. They claimed that a levy on the import of raw materials used in medication had been imposed. This is causing the sector to shrink.
In addition, Dr. Ayesha Ghous Pasha, Minister of State for Finance. Informed the association’s officials that their concerns will be addressed and handled as quickly as possible.
Senators Talha Mehmood, Farooq Hamid Naik, Zeeshan Khanzada, Anwar-ul-Haq Kakar, Minister of State for Finance Dr. Ayesha Ghous Pasha, FBR Chairman, and law ministry officials attended the meeting.