Friday, 12th April, 2024
Friday, 12th April, 2024

Kamal for improving revenue management to raise revenue collection

Finance Minister AHM Mustafa Kamal
today said that there is a need to improve the overall tax management
including the incorporation of digital tax payment system to increase
revenue collection.

“We’ve been able to remove the ‘tax fear’ which did persist among
country’s people in the past. People now want to pay tax,” he said.

The Finance Minister was addressing a function virtually as chief
guest marking the distribution of best taxpayer honour and tax cards
held at the National Board of Revenue (NBR) building in the city’s
Segunbagicha area.

State Minister for Public Administration Farhad Hossain spoke on
the occasion as special guest chaired by NBR chairman Abu Hena Md
Rahmatul Muneem.

Former communications minister Syed Abul Hossain, NBR member (tax
policy) M Alamgir Hossain, British American Tobacco CEO Sehzad Munir,
Grameenphone CEO Yasir Azman, Akij Group managing director Sheikh
Bashiruddin, Unilever, Bangladesh CEO Kedar Lele, spoke, among others,
at the function.

Stressing the need for bringing all eligible people under the tax
net, Kamal said, “We want to bring all eligible people under the tax
net, we hope that the tax net will be expanded further if the rates
are reduced rationally. New taxpayers will be brought under the tax
net.”

Noting that Bangladesh is still lagging behind in terms of tax-GDP
ratio compared to other economies as it is still hovering around 10
percent, he said this tax-GDP ratio should be at least 16 to 17
percent. “But, the difference is much higher……we’ll have to build
digital revenue management to bridge this gap.”

The Finance Minister said there is a need to go for automation to
address the weaknesses of the revenue management.

“Nothing should be in place through which revenue collection is
done physically, rather digital payment system should be introduced in
such a way so that information could go directly to the server of NBR
once tax is paid by the taxpayers,” he added.

Kamal also stressed the need for installing more scanner machines
at the ports.

“Scanners should be in place so that none can do import and export
operations giving false declarations. If it is done, then the trend of
bringing one product giving declaration of other product as well as
the trend of tax evasion will be reduced. At the same time, the
revenue collection will also increase,” he added.

Extending thanks to those who have attained the honour of best
taxpayers despite the coronavirus pandemic, the Finance Minister said
these taxpayers could play much bigger role towards mobilizing more
revenues and thus motivate the other taxpayers to pay tax.

State Minister for Public Administration Farhad Hossain said the
government was able to deliver a large size budget since the people of
the country came forward in large numbers to pay tax.

“But, we’ll have to expand further the tax net,” he said putting
emphasis on further simplifying the tax payment system including
submission of tax returns.

NBR Chairman Abu Hena Md Rahmatul Muneem said that work is underway
to move forward the automation process including developing software
to reach the tax-GDP ratio into a satisfactory position.

Side by side, support is being taken from various intelligence
agencies to get information about the taxpayers from the secondary
sources.

He said no tax or VAT office remained shut for a single day despite
the pandemic while the revenue board officials have worked
relentlessly keeping their lives at stake during this pandemic in
order to keep operational the trade and commerce and wheels of the
country’s economy.

Farhad Hossain handed over honour certificates and tax cards to
five best taxpayers at individual level and five best taxpayers at
company level at the function.

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