Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Monday that the country would definitely see good times, reassuring the masses that money collected from the taxes they pay will be spent on them.
Speaking on Geo News’ programme Pakistan Keliye Kar Daalo, PM Khan once again vowed not to undertake unnecessary [foreign] tours, adding that he was invited to the United Kingdom to witness the World Cup matches, but he did not go.
He said the country was passing through a difficult phase. “Half of our income goes to servicing of debts. We will have to change ourselves for development of the country,” he said.
The prime minister said the country was in its present state because of corruption.
“We reduced the PM House expenditures and salaries of cabinet members by 35 and 10 per cent respectively, while the armed forces have also reduced their expenses,” he said.
“People think that if they came into the tax net, they would be troubled. I guarantee that no institution would bother the people,” he claimed, adding that a helpline would be established to facilitate the masses. “As long as taxes are not collected, the country cannot function,” he said.
The premier said his government would introduce modern technology in the taxation system and that efforts were being made to bring reforms in the Federal Board of Revenue.
“If revenue is not increased, the debts will continue to go higher and higher,” the premier said, adding that he wanted the masses to benefit from the government’s asset declaration scheme. He again urged people to get their assets registered by June 30 as there would be no extension in the scheme after the deadline.
“The government has all information unlike the past. Legislation has been made with regard to money laundering and fictitious bank accounts across the world,” Khan said.
“People have bought properties in Dubai in the name of their servants; money is laundered abroad through ‘hundi’ and ‘hawala’, and brought back by means of remittances,” he continued.
Imran Khan said $10 billion were laundered out of Pakistan yearly and the country had had to acquire a $6 billion loan from the IMF.
The prime minister, however, made it clear that the asset declaration scheme was not meant for public office bearers.