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Experts laud focus on Track and Trace System to counter tax evasion

Experts laud focus on Track and Trace System to counter tax evasion

LAHORE – Experts have termed Track and Trace System instrumental to counter illegal trade and tax evasion. 

“Previously, increasing taxes on documented sectors was a tool used by the government to increase revenue without taking impactful measures to counter illicit trade. For the first time a concrete step has been taken in this regard with the introduction of the Track and Trace System,” said an expert.

“However, complete implementation and enforcement of this system is vital to bring results. Though the implementation started with the tobacco sector, it hasn’t been implemented in all cigarette manufacturing units yet,” he reasoned. 

It is pertinent to mention that Prime Minister Imran Khan has also termed the launch of Track and Trace System as a major step towards strengthening the tax culture in Pakistan and enhancing the capacity of FBR which would ensure the tax receipts increased upto Rs 8 trillion in near future. He highlighted that due to low tax to GDP ratio in Pakistan, the government does not provide enough resources for the betterment of the people but now the use of technology to make the tax system more efficient would help in promoting tax culture.

Experts are hopeful that the Track and Trace System will be implemented in letter and spirit as the Prime Minister has vowed to personally monitor the results of T&T along with the expansion of scope to other industries. Till now the system has been implemented in the tobacco and sugar industry which are the two most tax evaded industries.

Only the tobacco sector contributes to an annual loss of Rs. 70 billion to the national exchequer due to illicit trade of cigarettes. Other major industries, including cement, steel and fertilizer, will also be brought under the supervision of the system soon.

Experts believe that revenue generated from the implementation of the Track and Trace System will not only help reduce economic losses but also provide resources to improve social conditions, build infrastructure and improve the living standards of the people by providing health, education, clean drinking water and other necessities to the masses.

Implementation of the long-awaited Track and Trace System is a result of the strong political will of Prime Minister Imran Khan and special efforts of his economic team but they need to ensure effective enforcement of the system.

Source: The Nation

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