Rawalpindi: The Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) has asked for proposals from businessmen for the federal budget for the year 2023-2024 which will be submitted to the Ministry of Finance and the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).
RCCI President Saqib Rafiq while addressing the executive committee meeting said that the Chamber’s Standing Committee on Tax affairs is finalizing the budget proposals. These proposals will take into account the current economic challenges, particularly the depreciation of the rupee, problems faced by exporters and importers, rising inflation, increase in cost of doing business, income tax, sales tax, point of sales, FBR powers, SMEs, renewable energy and industrialization. The emphasis will be on broadening the tax net, overreach and harassment by tax authorities, documenting the economy, he added.
Saqib Rafiq said that at present the current account is in surplus. He appreciated the efforts of the Ministry of Finance, however, he stressed on increasing exports, protecting local industry and industrialization will have to be promoted.
Chamber President Saqib Rafiq said that Rawalpindi Chamber has always been insisting to find new taxpayers and increase the tax net, the burden on existing taxpayers has been increased.
“The inflation has increased many times, we also demand that our sales tax, interest rate, income tax and duties are very high compared to the neighboring countries, we are far behind in the competitive environment, ” he added.
He said that currently the rate of sales tax is 18 percent, and in the recent mini-budget, the rate has been increased to 25 percent on certain items, this rate should be reduced to single digit in a phase wise.
He demanded that double taxation shall be eliminated. Traders have severe concerns on Point of Sales installation especially with respect to the size of the shop. He suggested that the POS matter should be implemented after consultation with stakeholders and building consensus.