Rawalpindi Chamber of Commerce and Industry (RCCI) President Nadeem Rauf and Group Leader Sohail Altaf in a joint statement demanded that the property tax levied in Finance Bill 2022-23 be withdrawn as it deprives the citizens of basic rights and discouraged business expansions.
“Doing one or more businesses or having more than one branch is a basic right of every citizen. The imposed property tax, deemed rental income, and fair value assessment in the budget falls into the category of double taxation. These anomalies in the budget should be removed,” he added.
RCCI President Nadeem Rauf said that it is the basic right of every person to do one or more business or to have multiple branches as long as these are registered in the income tax return and tax is being paid and such properties should be exempt from deemed income purview.
He said that Plots on which construction work is in progress or the plan is approved or under approval by the concerned Development Authority should also be exempted to encourage construction activities thus the creation of jobs and over 40 allied industries will get a boost. Where agreement between the landlord and tenant is already available in tax record, such cases should not be opened for re-assessment of deemed income, he added.
He said that the assessment must be on the declared value in the wealth statement if at all this deemed rental income is essential to be carried on due to any covet rationale linked with the IMF package.
Group Leader Sohail Altaf said that the country needs dollars at the moment, and more incentives and encouragement need to be given to overseas Pakistanis. He suggested that to encourage foreign remittances, the Overseas Pakistanis should be exempted from the deemed income clause. An individual sending dollars 100,000/ in a year be allowed to buy up to 800 cc locally assembled vehicles free of duty. A separate slab can be introduced for higher categories. Most needed foreign exchange will be attracted and also the local auto industry will benefit, he added.
Committees consisting of representatives of all chambers of commerce and traders’ associations across Pakistan should be formed for a fixed tax regime on small traders so that the implementation of fixed tax can be implemented by consensus.
He further suggested that a 0.25% turnover tax on poultry feed like flour mills and the waiver of GST be given on Grand Parent day old chicks as it is considered as seed.
Government must lift the sales tax on pharmaceutical Raw materials. Government, if needed, can impose a 1 percent fixed GST on pharmaceutical raw materials, he further suggested.