FBR cautions tax defaulters about bank freeze, travel restrictions

 FBR cautions tax defaulters about bank freeze, travel restrictions

FBR cautions tax defaulters about bank freeze, travel restrictions

The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has issued a stern warning to individuals failing to file income tax returns, indicating potential consequences such as the freezing of bank accounts and restrictions on domestic and international travel.

The FBR’s Chief of Broadening the Tax Base (BTB), Muhammad Asif, announced that a nationwide survey targeting businesses and commercial units is underway to identify non-filers for registration purposes.

Non-filers are urged to register with the nearest tax office promptly to avoid penalties, fines, utility disconnection, suspension of bank accounts, and, in extreme cases, restrictions on motorway travel and international air travel, he said.

FBR’s field formations across the country are actively conducting surveys and collecting information on businesses and commercial activities, with details to made available on the FBR website soon.

The official documents highlight that Pakistan, with a population of 240 million, faces the challenge of a narrow tax base, with only 5.2 million individuals registered in the tax system and filing returns in 2022.

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The country grapples with widespread tax evasion, a low tax-to-GDP ratio, and a deficiency in the number of tax filers, impacting revenue generation and hindering critical public services and socioeconomic development initiatives.

Moreover, Recognizing the urgent need to broaden the tax base, FBR has initiated a nationwide drive targeting eligible individuals and those with taxable income, encouraging them to register with the tax system and file their income returns. The goal is to add 1.5 million new taxpayers during the current year.

In addition, With FBR in possession of data on almost all eligible non-filers, individuals advised to take advantage of the available time, visit their nearest tax office, and registered to avoid potential consequences. Including penalties, fines, utility disconnection, bank account suspension, and, in extreme cases, travel restrictions on motorways and abroad, warned FBR official.

The FBR’s warning is a clear signal that the government is serious about cracking down on tax evasion. Individuals who have not been filing their income tax returns should take this opportunity to come clean and avoid the potential consequences.

The FBR’s drive to broaden the tax base is an important step towards improving Pakistan’s fiscal health. A wider tax base will generate more revenue, which can used to fund critical public services and socioeconomic development initiatives.

Its hoped that the FBR’s efforts will successful in reducing tax evasion and increasing the number of tax filers in Pakistan.

Web Desk

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