Adviser to PM on Finance Hafeez Sheikh said on Wednesday that the government collected taxes worth Rs580 billion, instead of Rs509 billion in the first two months of fiscal year 2019-20.
The finance adviser said so while speaking at a press conference in Islamabad together with members of the government’s economic team. He said efforts are ongoing for improving the economic situation of the country.
“When we came into power, the country’s foreign debts were more than Rs30,000 billion,” Sheikh noted. He said no new tax was imposed on exporters in the budget, rather they were given concessions.
The PM’s adviser said the government arranged resources for this from the World Bank and other financial institutions.
“Government expenditures were reduced by Rs50 billion, whereas defence spending was frozen,” he explained, adding that the advantages of these measures would be seen now.
Sheikh said the exports of the country grew by $2.23 billion in July, while the imports also decreased.
“The current account deficit decreased by 73%,” he said. “The government collected Rs580 billion tax in the first two months, instead of Rs509 billion.”
The finance adviser said that tax receivables increased by 24% in the first two months of the current fiscal year. “Sales tax collection grew by 43%, while in-land taxes recorded an increase of 39%.”
He said the government had set a target of Rs644 billion in the first two months of FY2019-20 and it achieved 90% of it.
Sheikh further said the number of tax return filers also increased by 25%. He said the government recently reduced the prices of petrol and diesel, which would facilitate the middle-income population.