The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has released the provisional revenue collection figures for the month of March 2021.
The net collection for the month of March was Rs. 475 billion, against a required increase of Rs. 367 billion, representing an increase of 46% over Rs. 325 billion collected in March 2020 and 129% of the target. The year-on-year growth of 46% is unprecedented. These figures would further improve before the close of the day and after book adjustments have been taken into account.
According to the provisional information, FBR has collected net revenue of Rs.3394 billion during the July-March period, which has exceeded the target of Rs. 3287 billion by more than Rs.100 billion. This represents a growth of about 10% over the collection of Rs. 3076 billion during the same period last year.
On the other hand, the gross collections increased from Rs. 3178 billion during this period last year to Rs. 3571 billion this year, showing an increase of 13%. The number of refunds disbursed was Rs. 177 billion compared to Rs. 102 billion paid last year, showing an increase of 74%. This is reflective of FBR’s resolve to fast-track refunds to prevent liquidity shortages in the industry.
The improved revenue performance is a reflection of growing economic activities in the country despite facing the challenge of the third wave of COVID-19. During April-June 2021, it is expected that this revenue performance would be improved substantially compared to 2020 when economic activities were disrupted due to COVID.
Meanwhile, FBR’s efforts to broaden the tax base are expanding apace. Early signs suggest such efforts are bearing fruits. As of 28-2-2021, income tax returns for the tax year 2020 have reached 2.8 million compared to 2.6 million last year, showing an increase of 8%. The tax deposited with returns was Rs. 51 billion compared to only Rs. 33.0 billion, showing an increase of 54%.
It may be recalled that last year the final date for submission to returns was 28th February. FBR’s decision to adhere to 8th December as the last date has been vindicated as more returns and higher tax payments have been recorded during the tax year 2020 compared to 2019. Moreover, a number of 123,680 new Income Tax Returns have been received for Tax Year 2020 resulting in the collection of additional tax of Rs. 511 million.
Sales tax returns for the period from July 2020 to February 2021 have reached 179,584 whereas they were 167,769 in the corresponding months last year, showing an increase of 7.04 %. The sales tax paid with returns is 624 billion this year which was 536 billion last year, showing an increase of 16.41 %.
FBR has also released information about Tier-I retailers who have been integrated with POS system. According to the information, 10283 sales points have been integrated with the Point of Sales Linked Invoicing System.
Pakistan Customs has initiated a focused counter-smuggling drive. During March 2021, smuggled goods worth Rs.3.634 billion have been seized while in March 2020; smuggled goods worth Rs. 2.74 billion were seized, thus showing a monthly increase of 39%.
Similarly, during the last 9 months (July 2020-Mar 2021) of the current financial year smuggled goods worth Rs. 45.98 billion have been seized as compared to Rs. 27.7 billion from July 2019 to March 2020 of the last financial year thus showing an increase of 66 %. Moreover, the value of seized goods of Rs. 46 billion in 9 months of current FY has crossed the total value of seized goods of last year. In FY 2019-20, smuggled goods worth Rs.36 billion were seized.
Directorate General of Intelligence & Investigation-IR showed commendable performance from July to March 2021. During this period, Directorate General forwarded 846 Investigation Reports to the field formations involving revenue amounting to Rs. 147 billion. Directorate General filed 136 complaints under the Anti-Money Laundering Act, 2010 against 175 accused persons involving revenue of Rs. 50 billion during the period from October 2018 to March 2021. Further, Directorate General seized 5057 cartons of illicit cigarettes containing 50,570,000 cigarette sticks during July to March 2021.