NA body on Finance meets

ISLAMABAD, Nov 07 (APP): The National Assembly’s Standing Committee on Finance here on Tuesday was given several suggestions by the economic experts on devising a policy and implementation mechanism to develop economy on sustainable basis.
Chaired by Qaisar Ahmed Sheikh MNA, the meeting was suggested by economic expert and former bureaucrat, Saeed Qureshi that the government should follow the World Bank’s index of ease of doing business to help promote sustained growth.
He also suggested for commissioning a study on issue of ‘One-Window’ saying we had been talking about the facility for last 50 years but failed to do it so far. He also suggested for removal of business irritants.
On the occasion, former Chairman Federal Bureau of Statistics, Abdullah Yusuf, highlighted the issues of tax gap and urged for comprehensive tax policy. He was of the view that the tax collection does not commensurate with the total potential, arguing that non-documented economy was one of the reason for this gap. He urged for systematization through automation and cited example of Chili where the tax authorities had made tremendous progress in evaluating the actual tax of the taxpayers.
He said that manufacturing sector of Pakistan was contributing 21 percent to GDP but its tax share in taxes was 66 percent compared to tax share of 33 percent by service sector which shares 58 percent to GDP. Similarly, he added that agriculture, which contributes 21 percent to GDP contributes less than one percent to tax.
He said that there were countries were the tax to GDP ratio was almost 50 percent, citing examples of Norway and Sweden.
He said that it was critical to take these measures but these have to be taken, sooner the better.
The committee also gave go ahead to the finance ministry to repeal the Establishment of Federal Bank for Cooperatives and Regulations of Cooperatives Banking (Repeal) Bill 2017 as well as the House Building Finance Corporation (Repeal) Bill. However, the committee was of the view that these bills should be repealed only of there was no pending liability.
Beside others the meeting was also attended by its member, economic experts and officials from Ministry of Finance, State Bank of Pakistan and other relevant organizations.
APP/ Saeeda/anm/VNS Islamabad