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IMF urges Pakistan to bring non-filers into the tax net

The International Monetary Fund logo is seen during the IMF/World Bank spring meetings in Washington, US, April 21, 2017. PHOTO: REUTERS

An International Monetary Fund delegation urged Pakistan to bring non-filers into the tax net.

The third round of discussions between the IMF mission and Pakistan was held on Monday.

The fund representatives met officials of the Federal Board of Revenue and the finance ministry.

The FBR briefed the international delegation on the country’s taxation system. They were also informed about the amendments brought by the Finance Act 2018 to widen the tax net.

On Friday, Finance Minister Asad Umar said that the government has no plans to seek new loans from the IMF any time soon. “We are in talks with them [the IMF] but not to negotiate a loan,” Umar said.

The finance minister said that the talks would help Pakistan whenever it decides to seek a bailout. He said that the economy was undergoing a bypass and would improve with the efforts of the government.

Read more: Pakistan has no plans to go to IMF any time soon

Pakistan has gone to the IMF repeatedly since the late 1980s. The last time was in 2013, when Islamabad got a $6.6 billion loan to tackle an economic crisis.

However, there are fears that the terms of any new loan will be more stringent than in 2013 due to tense relations with the US, the lender’s biggest donor.

In July, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo voiced concerns over any IMF bailout being used to repay Chinese loans to Islamabad.

 

 

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