The Standing Committee on Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs in its meeting took up the Finance Bill 2020 containing the Annual Budget statement presented in the House on 12 June 2020.
Amendments made to the Public Finance Management Act, the Income Tax Ordinance 2001, and the Anti-Dumping Law were reviewed.
Chaired by Senator Farooq Hamid Naek, the meeting was attended by Senator Mohsin Aziz, Senator Muhammad Akram, Senator Zeeshan Khanzada, Senator Musadik Masood Malik, Senator Mian Muhammad Ateeq Sheikh, Senator Talha Mehmood, Senator Ayesha Raza Farooq, and senior officers from the Ministry for Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs, Ministry of Commerce and Federal Board Revenue.
Deliberating over the amendments in the Public Amendment Finance Act 2019 the committee discussed amendments pertaining to various clauses. Budget Strategy Paper, Budgeting and Accounting Framework, Annual Budget Statement, Plan based on Government’s Expenditure, Performance-Based Budget, Surrender of Savings, Expenditure from Federal Consolidated Fund and Public Accounts, Cash Management, Government Banking Arrangements, Special Purpose Funds, and Power to make Rules were discussed in detail. Some clauses were deferred for further deliberation.
Reviewing the Income Tax Ordinance 2001 the committee deliberated over tax mechanisms that were related to Plant and Machinery, Royalty Fee for Offshore Digital Services, Shipping Policy, Rental Income, Depreciation, Capital Gains Tax, Charitable Donations, Tax Credit for Enlistment and Tax Credit for Certain Persons. Special Provisions relating to Builders and Developers were also discussed in detail. The rest of the clauses will be taken up tomorrow.
Deferred clauses of the Customs Act 1969 were taken up. Secretary Maritime Affairs submitted documentation with regards to concessions on raw material for the concession holder and its operating companies in Gwadar. However, due to a lack of documentation, the matter has been deferred until Tuesday next week.
The issue will be discussed in an in-camera meeting. Chairman Committee Senator Farooq Hamid Naek, while speaking about the development of Gwadar, said that the entire Finance Committee strongly recommends and advocates for the development of Gwadar. He asserted that Gwadar is going to be the gateway to Central Asia and is an emerging city of Pakistan.
He added that the city has enormous economic opportunities that can help the development of Balochistan and Pakistan in collaboration with CEPC projects. He further stated that the committee hopes that the policies will help eradicate poverty and expedite ongoing development in Gwadar.
He said that the committee strongly recommends that all efforts should be made by the government for the development of Gwadar.
The Committee rejected the amendments to the Anti-Dumping Law proposed by the Ministry of Commerce.