May 26, 2024

BSS, DHAKA: Speakers at a pre-budget discussion today said that implementation of the reforms programmes by the NBR, enhancing capacity of the revenue administration, digitalizing fully the revenue collection system and withdrawing tax exemption facilities in some sectors are very much necessary to increase the revenue generation of the country.

They also noted although the country is witnessing higher GDP growth every year, but the tax to GDP ratio is yet to reach into a desired level.

They came up with such remarks at a “Pre-Budget Discussion Highlighting Income Tax, VAT, Customs duty, Sector-wise allocation of Budget, external debt, etc.” at the ICAB Bhaban in the capital’s Kawran Bazar area.

Organized by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Bangladesh (ICAB), former State Minister for Planning Dr. Shamsul Alam spoke as the chief guest presided over by ICAB President Mohammad Forkan Uddin.

Moderated by former ICAB president Md. Humayun Kabir, Dr. Ahsan H Mansur, executive director, Policy Research Institute (PRI), Mohammad Hatem, executive president, Bangladesh Knitwear Manufacturers and Exporters Association (BKMEA), M Saiful Islam, former president of Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI), Mahbub Ahmed, former senior secretary, Finance Division,

Abdul Haque, former president, Japan Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce & Industry (JBCCI), former NBR chairman Dr Abdul Mazid, former NBR members M Farid Uddin and Aminur Rahman, Tariff Commission former member Dr Mostafa Abid Khan, ERF president Refayet Ullah Mirdha and former general secretary SM Rashidul Islam, and ICAB CEO Shubhasish Bose spoke, among others, on the occasion.

Speaking on the occasion as the chief guest, Dr Shamsul Alam said, “We’re having higher GDP growth every year, but it’s not being possible to increase the tax-GDP ratio. For this, there is a need to ensure reforms to the NBR and its implementation,” he said.

He also called for making online fully the tax collection system.

Renowned economist Ahsan H Mansur said that the main focus of the next budget should be restoring the macroeconomic stability and taming inflation.

Highlighting some suggestions in this regard, Dr Mansur said it is not possible to controlling inflation through printing notes, rather such practice should have to be stopped.

The eminent economist also suggested the government to take loans from the internal sources.

In order to ensure implementation of the reforms initiatives in the revenue management, Dr Mansur made strong recommendation to bring the VAT Act-2012 in to its previous state.

Former NBR member Aminur Rahman recommended for withdrawing the tax exemption facility and added that it should not be done in a wholesale basis, rather rationally after proper scrutiny.

Executive president of BKMEA Mohammad Hatem alleged that many businessmen are being harassed by the customs officials due to the HS code complexities and even had to pay fines.

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