LAHORE: Federal Finance Minister Ishaq Dar on Tuesday made it clear that no new powers have been conferred to the Tax Commissioners for initiating or conducting audit. Only an explanation has been added to the law to make the matter unambiguous.
The Federal Minister was talking to a delegation of Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry headed by LCCI President Farooq Iftikhar and comprising former LCCI Presidents Mian Misbah-ur-Rehman, Sheikh Muhammad Asif, Convener Finance & Taxation Tanveer Ahmad Sufi and Co-Convener Sales Tax Committee Akhtar Ali. Since the announcement of the Finance Bill, it was fourth meeting of the Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry in connection with anomalies in the Federal Budget.
The Finance Minister also agreed to omit S.No.36 of the Third Schedule of the Sales Tax Act, 1990 saying that it was too confusing and would give lot of discretionary powers to Inland Revenue Authorities. It was, therefore, decided to omit the said S.No.36 from the Third Schedule of the Sales Tax Act, 1990.
It was agreed that instead of inward/outward gate passes and transport receipts, sales tax invoices will be used as the appropriate document for Sales Tax Records. However, if any information is missing from present format of sales tax invoice, necessary changes in the sales tax invoice will be made by the government so that the said invoice is issued by the registered persons. It was agreed that inward/ outward gate passes and transport receipts will be dispensed with.
Both the sides also discussed in detail Withholding Tax under section 236G & 236H of the Income Tax Ordinance, 2001 and the practical problems being faced by manufacturers in deducting and filing of withholding tax statement. The Finance Minister agreed to look into the matter favourably.
The Finance Minister very kindly agreed that the FBR will issue Sales Tax General Order in few days to ensure that no liability is created against buyers/suppliers if they have not made collusive arrangements with their buyers/suppliers. As a result thereof, bona fide buyers and suppliers will be protected.
The LCCI delegation thanked the Finance Minister for making appropriate changes in the law for appointment of Technical/Judicial Members to the Appellate Tribunal Inland Revenue.
The Lahore Chamber of Commerce & Industry pointed out that due to levy of sales tax at 16% by PRA on Services of Toll Manufacturing/Conversion Charges, double taxation is resulting as the Federal Government is also demanding sales tax at 17%, considering these items as goods. A representation in this regard was also handed over to the Minister as well as to the Chairman FBR and they agreed to look into the matter and take appropriate decision.