Breaking: Telcos to Exempt Majority of Pakistanis from Withholding Tax

Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) is going to propose legislation in the upcoming budget for 2017-18 to exempt mobile phone subscribers (who do not fall under the tax net) from payment of withholding tax.

This was revealed by FBR officials while briefing the Senate Standing Committee on Information Technology and Telecommunication which met with Taj Mohammad Afridi in the chair.

Once implemented, telcos will exempt majority of Pakistanis from witholding taxes that they pay on each card re-load.

Not to mention, subscribers will continue to pay GST or Sales Tax on service consumption.

Parliamentarians stated that it was a serious issue whereby billions of rupees are collected under the head of WHT from cellular subscribers, even those poor people of Pakistan who do not fall under the tax net and unfortunately the FBR has still no mechanism in place to deal with the situation.

“FBR has failed to provide relief to the common man”, said the committee members.

The FBR said that legislation is required to grant such kind of exemption to the consumers having income below taxable limit. In the upcoming budget, such proposals will be tabled.

The committee in last meeting had recommended FBR to establish a mechanism for connectivity with the servers of the mobile phone operators for monitoring of withholding taxes.

About the status on the online withholding data sharing by telecom companies, FBR officials said that FBR/PRAL has developed the utility which allows Telcos to upload withholding data file on agreed format on both FTP and HTTP based Web service.

FBR/PRAL has also finished the task of data reading and populating the relevant data repository at FRB’s end. FBR/PRAL has communicated to all Telcos the process of uploading withholding data files, they added.

A meeting was held in LTU Islamabad on 13th February, 2017 for the enforcement of above process and Telcos agreed to upload their data. So far all Telcos have not uploaded withholding tax data.

Even these Telcos such as Mobilink, who have uploaded the data, haven’t done so in the required format. FBR and LTUs are in constant touch with the telcos for uploading of the data and communicating if the data uploaded is in incorrect format.

Once entire date is uploaded, Large Taxpayers Unit will analyze it and further action, if any, would be initiated. The committee gave three months time to FBR for finalizing the arrangement.


      • You must be having record of their looting? Why you didn’t appear in SC ?

        P.S. Badshah ka ghulam, patwari khnay sy kaam nahe chalay ga. Be logical and come with something at least mentioned in media on WHT.

          • Ghulami main dihari kahan hoti hai. Baadshah salamat ki nazr-e-karam pe hi khush hotay hounge is jaise log.

        • Whenever we post ‘logic’ you drop from the face of the earth. Happened multiple times here in ProPak.

          Bhaiyya kitna rupia maheena letay ho? Ho sakta hai main bhi afford kr skta houn aur aap meray liay kaam shuru krdo ;)

        • Nahi, inhoune to nahi khae. Woh to mulk ki taraqqi k liay UK aur US main plots khareednay k liay istemaal ho gae hounge.

  • Data will be uploaded on http and ftp hacker are noting these tips. Websites compromise on the cards. Also I heard fbr published list of all tax payers for public including criminals destroying data protection and privacy of tax payers

  • How will this possibly be implemented ?

    People in old age are usually returned by telecos for new SIM cards with an excuse that thumb impressions can’t be taken.

  • How will they determine who is below the limit and who isn’t? Most people aren’t registered with the FBR. The telcos don’t know what a subscribers income is so they won’t be able to tell.

    >FBR officials said that FBR/PRAL has developed the utility which allows
    Telcos to upload withholding data file on agreed format on both FTP and
    HTTP based Web service.

    FTP is not a web service. It is a different protocol altogether.

    Second neither FTP nor plain HTTP are secure.

    • Its quite simple to know who will be beneficiary of tax: People filing tax return showing low income. Non filers will have no benefit at all.

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