Taxing empty plots

Yesterday, I watched a news channel which reported that Mr. Miftah Ismail, Pakistan’s current finance minister has said that empty plots of land where possession can be taken from the concerned housing society are going to taxed. This will be disastrous for the real estate market of the country. The long term investors who keep the plots of land for longer period of time include a lot of overseas Pakistanis who normally build the house on their plots when they finally return home which makes perfect economic sense. Now the respectable finance minister is saying that if these empty plots are not built, he is going to tax such plots. This will create a very difficult situation for the overseas Pakistanis who made immense investment in Pakistan’s real estate market with their hard earned foreign earning and it is not easy for them to return to country to build their empty plots of land. I would request the government of Pakistan to reconsider the proposal to tax the empty plots because this will discourage investment in real estate sector and will result into loss of tax revenue for the government instead of increasing the tax revenue from county’s real estate sector.

EJAZ AHMAD MAGOON

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LAHORE

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