LAHORE: The business community has expressed concern that if the Value Added Tax law is implemented in its current form it may open the “floodgates to corruption” and discourage new investment.
The Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) on Wednesday urged the government to put off the implementation of the law or face protest from the business community. In an emergency meeting of the LCCI, organised by the Standing Committee on Sales Tax, Federal Excise, Finance and Taxation, business leaders said that the abolition of zero-rating facility available to five export oriented sectors and reverting back to refund regime was beyond their understanding as it would open the way for corrupt practices and seriously impede cash flows of companies.
Discussing the law, they said that because the definition of tax fraud has been extended to cover tax evasion as the provision could be abused by tax officials. They also felt that undue powers had been given to the tax officials to determine open market value of goods.
Published in the Express Tribune, May 20th, 2010.