Cabinet, PM opposed it
The government won’t be increasing taxes on mobile phone calls, SMS, and internet data, Finance Minister Shaukat Tarin confirmed Saturday.
The Budget 2021-2022, which was unveiled on Friday, imposed an additional tax on the services above. The decision was, however, taken back after opposition from Prime Minister Imran Khan and his cabinet.
The PM and Cabinet did not approve the FED levy on internet data usage. It will not be included in the final draft of the Finance Bill (budget) that is placed before parliament for approval.— Hammad Azhar (@Hammad_Azhar) June 11, 2021
The government prepared a growth-oriented budget this year and its aim is to stabilise growth, Tarin said in a post-budget speech in Islamabad Saturday.
The minister revealed that the tax target for the next financial year was Rs500 billion. The plan is to increase revenues by taxes and earning dollars by increasing imports.
Anyone evading taxes won’t be able to escape the law, he warned, adding that tax is being imposed on all big retail stores as they have sales up to Rs1,500 billion.
The new budget will bring ease and opportunities for the poor, Tarin promised. Loans will be given by commercial banks to small welfare banks. In the first stage, the government has set a target of four million people.
Farmers will be given 500,000 loans of up to Rs150,000. Similar loans of Rs2 million will be given for construction and housing.
Talking about Pakistan going to the IMF, Tarin said that the country can’t withdraw until its economic position is stable.
“We need 20% growth in exports. Our savings rate is 15% and investment rate is 16%,” he said.
“If we do not have revenue, how will we achieve growth!”