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Pakistan: Govt to slap more taxes in FY 2019-20 budget

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Zubair Yaqoob
Zubair Yaqoob
The author has diversified experience in business reporting. He is Chief content editor at wnobserver.com He can be reached at: [email protected]
Government of Pakistan is set to announce annual budget for the financial year 2019-20 on June 11. Well informed source told “WNObserver” that the Ministry of Finance under the advisory of Dr Hafeez Shaikh has planned to slap heavy taxes in the upcoming budget.
According to details, new taxes of Rs40 billion have been proposed in the next budget.

Earlier in May, Adviser on Finance Abdul Hafeez Shaikh said that the government had set the revenue collection target of Rs5.5 trillion for the next financial year.

Following taxes are likely to be documented in the Finance bill 2019-20, an official from Ministry of Finance told.

1) Unregistered industrial / commercial entities (not having sales tax registration numbers STRNs) having electricity / gas bill amount in excess of Rs 20,000 per month, extra sales tax would be increased from 5% to 20%
2) Residential consumers be made liable to provide NTN in case electricity bill amount exceeds Rs 1.2 million per year or levy advance income tax withholding of 20%.
3) All exemptions (like exemption on agricultural income) under the Income Tax Law should only be made available to filers so that exempt income is also reported and wealth is reconciled with income reported in the return.
4) Withholding tax on International business class tickets under section 236L is same Rs 16,000 for filer and non-filer, it would be increased to Rs 50,000 for non-filers.
5) Withholding income tax on interest income u/s 151 is 10% for filer and 17.5% for non-filer. Rate would be increased to 30% for non-filers.
6) Annual private motor vehicle tax u/s 234 for non-filers is Rs 30,000 for 2000 CC and above. Rate for non-filers would be increased to Rs 200,000 for 2000 CC and above.
7) Rate of income tax on Filer as well as Non-Filer Commercial / industrial connections of electricity is 12% and 5% respectively. Rate of tax for Non Filer Commercial / industrial connections would be increased to 25%
8) At present, 12% WHT is being collected from owners of marriage halls on their electricity bills, which does not represent actual tax on their income. Moreover, the same is somehow minimized through use of generators. In order to avoid this, Capacity Tax would be imposed on marriage halls on the basis of per square feet coverage area.
List of registered Marriage halls paying capacity tax on per square foot basis would be on internet and accessible to all so that it can easily be identified who is not on the list thereby forcing them to get themselves register and pay tax.
9) Tax on capital gain on disposal of shares of Listed Company is 15% for Filers and 20% for Non-Filers. Rate of tax for Non-Filers would be increased to 30%
10) List of top 100 restaurants registered in Federal / Provincial sales tax with the amount of tax paid, would be on internet accessible to all so that famous busy restaurants who are not on this list or on bottom of the list are induced not to embarrass themselves by declaring low sales.
Lottery system be introduced for invoice collected by customers of restaurants and uploaded on designated website. Moreover, invoices submitted by customers should be cross checked with invoices reported by restaurants in their monthly sales tax return.
11) Advance tax 1% and 2% is collected from filer and non-filers respectively on sale of immovable property. For sale of land above 250 square yards, rate of advance tax would be increased to 10%
12) In addition to above referred tax, the real estate constructors should pay additional withholding tax when they get the constructed property registered in the name of buyers of their constructed property. This would be inline with withholding taxes imposed on industries on transactions executed by them.
12) Purchase of land (above specified limit) is only allowed by filers, however, holding of land and its sale by non-filers is still allowed. Holding of land by non-filers should be made more expensive by asking authorities collecting property tax (cantonment boards / societies / registrar) to collect adjustable advance income tax, from non-Filers, on behalf of the Federal Government as follows:
a) Rs 500,000 per year for 800 yards or more but less than 1800 yards.
b) Rs 1 million per year for 1800 yards and above.
c) So that such property comes for sale.
13) Currently, advance income tax on international travel is being collected as follows, which would be increased as follows:
a) First / Executive class – Rs 16,000 be increased to Rs 35,000 for Non-Filers
b) Other excluding Economy class – Rs 12,000 be increased to Rs 20,000 for Non-Filers
c) Economy class – No tax is being collected on economy class tickets. To allow data mining, marginal withholding tax (say Rs 200 – 500) would be imposed on Non-Filers just to gather data of frequent travelers.
14) mobile phone connection should only be available to Filers per CNIC

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