Tax amnesty scheme: Government set to introduce bill today -Pakistan Press Foundation (PPF)

Paksitan Press Foundtion

Tax amnesty scheme: Government set to introduce bill today

By: Imaduddin

ISLAMABAD: The government will introduce ‘The Tax Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2012’ Monday (today), launching the tax amnesty scheme to widen tax base and jacking up tax-to-GDP ratio. It is also likely to table the 23rd Constitutional Amendment for passage in the Lower House of Parliament to increase minority seats in the National Assembly and provincial assemblies.

According to sources inside the National Assembly Secretariat, the government would also table ‘The Trade Development Authority of Pakistan Bill, 2007’ for adoption to maximise exports of goods and services and to develop strategy and plans within the policy framework.

The cabinet, in its recent meeting, has already approved ‘The Tax Laws (Amendment) Bill, 2012’ ahead of starting the tax amnesty scheme.

Before tabling this money bill in the National Assembly, the sources said that President Asif Ali Zardari and Prime Minister Raja Pervez Ashraf also took their coalition partners into confidence to avoid any controversy. They said that the FBR is also seeking to table the money bill for amendment in the existing laws of income tax, sales tax and custom duty for making this scheme effective before the dissolution of assemblies.

The sources said that a bill for 23rd Constitutional Amendment has also been placed on agenda for the current session of the House.

According to the Amendment, minority’s seats would be increased from 10 to 14 in the National Assembly, 8 to 10 in Punjab Assembly, 9 to 12 in Sindh Assembly and 3 to 4 in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Balochistan each. The Cabinet has already approved this amendment.

Similarly, two other bills, including ‘The Electricity (Amendment) Bill, 2012’ and ‘The Criminal Law (Amendment) Bill, 2012’ will also be introduced in the Lower House of the Parliament.

The sources said that a call-attention notice moved by opposition party Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz (PML-N) would also be moved in the House to discuss the matter of theft of gas worth Rs16.5 billion from Sui Northern and Sui Southern systems during the current fiscal year

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