The non-filers would face the disconnection of utility connections including electricity and gas, as well as the blocking of mobile SIMs if return is not filed in response to notices issued.
As part of restructuring measures, the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has established 145 District Tax Offices to bring 1.5 to 2 million new taxpayers into the tax net till June 2024.
Caretaker Prime Minister (PM) Anwaarul Haq Kakar had stressed the importance of revenue and increasing the existing number of tax filers during recent meetings.
The FBR board notified the establishment of district tax offices, a new initiative that will help broaden the tax base and ultimately raise the tax-to-GDP ratio to a desired level.
The offices would be headed by District Tax Officers entrusted with the responsibility of enforcing Income Tax Returns from non-filers and stop-filers, according to a press release.
The establishment of these offices heralds a new chapter that would expand the tax net to fill a critical tax gap on the path to bring all potential taxpayers into the tax net, the statement said.
The new offices would be headed by dedicated Inland Revenue Officers in BS-17/18 which would obtain and utilize third-party data acquired from multiple departments and agencies that hold critical information regarding investment in assets and incurring of huge expenditures by potential taxpayers who till now have managed to escape and stayed away from the taxation system including registration and filing of tax returns.
One of the tools to be utilized for this purpose would be invoking recently introduced section 114B in the Income Tax Ordinance, 2001 which authorizes the department to disconnect utility connections including electricity and gas connections and blocking of mobile SIMS, if return is not filed in response to notices issued.
The federal government is committed to utilize all measures and provide assistance to FBR, it added.
A new documentation law is also being introduced to obligate various agencies and departments to provide data to the revenue board through automated common transmission system.
Collaboration and assistance from the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) has also been sought.
Chairman NADRA has assured the Federal Board of Revenue for its assistance for widening of the tax base through Data Integration.
The initiative would not only strengthen FBR’s capacity to enforce tax laws but will also facilitate taxpayers in filing tax returns by establishing dedicated offices, the statement added.