The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has sought Rs. 2.4 billion from the finance ministry for the achievement of Disbursement link indicator (DLIs) under the World Bank’s Pakistan Raises Revenue Program.
Sources told Propakistani that the Economic Coordination of Committee would consider the request of FBR on Wednesday (today) in a meeting to be held under the chair of Minister for Finance, Shaukat Tarin.
The tax department has asked ECC to approve Rs. 2.4 billion Technical Supplementary grant to meet the achievements of Pakistan Raises Revenue Program, as well as the smooth functioning of FBR offices on reforms initiatives all over the country.
The high ups of FBR have informed that the department is a resource-constrained organization that has been expanding its outreach in the field during the past whole decade without any additional funds for such activities.
FBR has created 30 new offices only during the last two years without any additional resources. There is an utmost and immediate need for keeping the hard-working and zealous workforce motivated besides office spaces, infrastructure, and logistic support for its existing establishment and newly created offices.
Sources said that the limited budgetary allocations for the current year are seriously hampering FBR efforts to accomplish the reform objectives. The Finance Division has allocated a budget of Rs. 2.7 billion for the current financial year 2020-21 against an allocation request of Rs. 4.3 billion, which was grossly disproportionate to meet the essential requirements.
On the other hand, the World Bank has disbursed $64.5 Million (Rs. 10,779 million) against the achievement of DLIs for the year 2019-20 during June 2020, which have already been credited in the government’s non-food account as confirmed in SBP letters.
The PRR Program was signed between the government of Pakistan and the International Development Association/The WB with the FBR as an implementing agency. As per the Financing agreement, an amount of $400 million is to be awarded as a loan over a period of five years.
There are two components of the PRR Program, which include $320 million to be provided to FBR as a budgetary grant through the Ministry of Finance, and an amount of $80 million to be provided as traditional Investment Project Financing (IPF). The PRR Program has been designed to provide financial resources for the government’s reform agenda.
The overall objective of PRRP is to contribute to a sustainable increase in domestic revenues. Under the PRRP and the indigenous reform agenda, FBR has undertaken several initiatives, including automation of processes, development of a skilled workforce, enforcement of tax laws, and broadening of the tax base as provided in the reforms initiatives shared with the Prime Minister Office.