ISLAMABAD: The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has received a record number of returns this year, along with the highest ever amount of income tax at the time of filing.
According to a statement issued by the FBR on Wednesday, “A total of nearly 1.8 million returns have been filed together with an amount of about Rs22 billion. Last year, around this time, 1.73 million returns were filed while about Rs13.5 billion were deposited as income tax.”
Comparatively, the returns are higher by 4pc and tax deposited is higher by 63pc.
It is important to note that the government had decided not to extend the tax filing deadline of 8 December 2020 with a view to restore the credibility and predictability of the final date, and to promote tax discipline. However, to ensure that no hardship was faced by taxpayers, a number of special measures were adopted.
These included liberal acceptance of requests for extension in filing date as available under the law; provision to file requests manually besides the online facility; enabling tax practitioners/advisors to file a single request for multiple clients; and enabling the chief commissioners to set up special desks for collection of manual request and sorting their jurisdiction at their level.
The above measures have encouraged a large number of taxpayers to file extension requests, the statement read. It is estimated that at least 300,000 taxpayers have made use of this facility, thus taking the number of potential returns to 2.1 million, which is 21pc higher compared to last year until this date.
It is further clarified that the process of filing is continuing unabated. A comparison with the returns of last year at the close of the deadline, which was 30 June 2020, would be meaningful when the number of additional returns to be filed until 30 June 2021 is available.
The FBR commended the determination of taxpayers, and the support it received from members of tax bars from all over the country, who have made such record setting returns and income tax payments possible. The results establish that the decision not to allow general extension in the last date, would go a long way toward re-establishing much needed trust and credibility of the tax system.