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    Word Bank and FBR Reviews Progress on PRR Project

    Word Bank and FBR Reviews Progress on PRR Project

    Chitral Times Report

    ISLAMABAD: Mr. Najy Benhassine, Country Director, World Bank, and Chairman Federal Board of Revenue Mr. Asim Ahmad held a meeting today at FBR Headquarters to review the progress of Pakistan Raises Revenue Program during the last financial year. The World Bank team included Gailius Draugelis, Operations Manager, Tobias Haque, Lead Country Economist, Lucy Pan, Senior Economist, Irum Touqeer, Public Sector Specialist and Shabih Ali Mohib, Manager. Member Reforms, FBR, Mr. Ardesher Tariq and members of the project team were also present in the meeting.

    It was noted that during the four years of project, significant achievements have been made for sustainable revenue mobilization, taxpayer facilitation and reducing cost of doing business under the PRRP. In particular, the harmonization of Sales Tax laws and procedures among provinces and the federal government was a landmark achievement with benefits for taxpayers and all revenue authorities.

    Other key achievements include reducing cost of doing business by reduction in withholding lines from 58 to 33, increase in the imports & exports through green channel from 35% to 66% and broadening of tax base. During the meeting, it was stressed that all efforts should be made for achieving the next objective of launching of Single Portal to facilitate Sales Tax Return filing. It may be noted that FBR has been publishing detailed tax expenditure reports to improve transparency.

    Both sides agreed to continue the focus on the upgradation of IT infrastructure and automation of FBR and for timely completion of project targets. Mr. Asim Ahmad highly appreciated the contributions and efforts put in by the teams on both sides. The Country Director also appreciated the progress and termed the GST harmonization as the flagship achievement of FBR. The FBR and World Bank agreed to continue cooperation in pursing the reforms agenda under the project.

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