According to the news report of a national daily, the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has selected seven vendors, under Video Analytics Rules 2020, for installing video analytics equipment at the premises of revenue-generating production units of industry sectors like sugar, cement, beverages, and tobacco among others.
This measure is aimed at incorporating technology to accurately measure the real output of these important sectors and preventing tax evasion. Video equipment will be installed to ensure electronic monitoring to curb tax evasion.
Another innovative technological solution, Track and Trace System, has already been in the works by FBR for over a decade. This system puts electronic stamps on production output, which can then be tracked in any part of the country with the help of a barcode.
However, this system has been at the receiving end of much criticism from the industry players and authorities. The last time FBR came close to its installation, the Islamabad High Court (IHC) struck down the bidding process of the system and directed the FBR to conduct fresh bidding.
“Now the FBR has hired an international consultancy firm M/S Ideco Biometric Solution belonging from South Africa that is going to supervise the whole procurement process so that a fool-proof process could be followed keeping in view best international practices,” shared an FBR official on Wednesday.
The official further remarked,
We are making efforts to accomplish the awarding contract of the Track and Trace system till December 31, 2020. Then the system will be run on a pilot project basis for six months so this system will become fully operational from July 1, 2021 (the next fiscal year 2021-22).
The FBR has selected vendors for allowing units of each sector to avail video monitoring systems from the selected seven firms.
The decision was made after FBR advertised for bids. Seven companies applied, and the authority decided to take all of them on board for this project.
These seven companies are as follows:
- M/S AJCL-Authentix-MITAS Consortium.
- M/S CNS Engineering.
- M/S COMMTEL Pakistan.
- M/S DWP Technological (Pvt) Ltd.
- M/S Focus Technologies (Pvt) Ltd.
- M/S NRTC and GCS.
- M/S TPL Trakker Ltd.
The FBR official further said, “In the first phase, the sugar sector is the first one where the video analytics system would be installed.
The FBR and Pakistan Sugar Mills Association had already signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU), and the sugar mills would be installing a system from their liked ones out of selected seven vendors”.
FBR will now sign agreements with other sectors in concern as well, in a phase by phase process.
This video analytics technology will allow real-time video analytics data monitoring of production from the manufacturing units. This would enable FBR to use the collected data for tax calculation purposes.