Tax amnesty scheme to revive national economy: Hafeez Shaikh
ISLAMABAD: Adviser to Prime Minister on Finance, Revenue and Economic Affairs Dr Abdul Hafeez Shaikh said on Tuesday that the federal cabinet has approved a scheme of assets’ declaration in a move to bring betterment in the national economy.
Hafeez Shaikh, while addressing a press conference after the federal cabinet meeting, announced that the federal government has aimed to launch this scheme not to collect money but to generate revenue for reviving national economy.
“It is decided that the assets which were not disclosed should be brought forward,” the adviser said.
“The [process of] scheme is very easy, which will not create any difficulties for the people. This scheme is not meant to threaten people but to do business. Every citizen can get the benefit of the scheme till June 30,” he said.
“Neither the individual, who are currently possessing a public portfolio or assumed charge of any public position, will not become part of the scheme nor their family members.”
“Declared assets will be brought to Pakistan while it can be submitted into banks. Those people not willing to bring assets back to Pakistan will have to pay 6 per cent tax.”
The finance adviser added, “The scheme can also be used for properties and benami accounts. The money kept abroad could be turned white by paying 4 per cent tax. It is the last chance for benami account holders as strict action will be taken in future. Benami properties will be seized under the law if it was not turned into white.”
While detailing Pakistan-IMF talks, he said that negotiations with International Monetary Fund held in positive direction which was continued since last 7-8 months.
Shaikh said that the Pakistani government and IMF signed an agreement for staff levelling during the first phase of dialogues. He said that the IMF board is due to grant final approval to the bailout package to Pakistan.
“We need to reduce our expenditures besides increasing tax collections,” he said.
Shaikh vowed that the nationals will not be burdened by the new electricity prices as the government has decided to allocate Rs216 billion subsidy in the budget for the fiscal year of 2019-20.
“Rs180 billion will be allocated for poverty alleviation and development budget will be increased,” Shaikh said.
The adviser rejected criticism of opposition parties over seeking financial package from IMF. He said that the criticism was coming from the elements who had sought the financial body for bailouts. Shaikh said that the nation will witness positive results of new decisions taken to improve the national economy.