Finance czar announces bonuses for NA, Senate staff with no relief in tax burden for salaried class

Minister says practice of providing an honourarium is consistent with previous years


News Desk June 25, 2024
Finance Minister Muhammad Aurangzeb. PHOTO: COURTESY/HBL

Finance Minister Muhammad Aurangzeb announced an honourarium equivalent to three basic salaries for officials who served during the budget session 2024-25 in the National Assembly (NA) and the Senate.

During his concluding speech on the budget debate in the NA on Tuesday, the minister recognised the hard work and dedication of staff from the Senate, NA, Capital Development Authority (CDA), Associated Press of Pakistan (APP), Pakistan Television (PTV), and Radio Pakistan for ensuring smooth proceedings and coverage of the houses.

However, no relief was provided in the form of a reduction in tax rates for the salaried class as the finance czar emphasized that the budget is grounded in a domestic reform plan to steer the country out of its current economic challenges.

Aurangzeb said the practice of providing an honourarium is consistent with previous years and is being maintained while fair distribution will be ensured.

In the Finance Bill 2024, the government has revised tax slabs that notably impact high-income earners with significant adjustments across various salary brackets. Under these new measures, individuals earning Rs6 million or more annually, equivalent to Rs500,000 per month, face an increased tax liability of Rs22,500 per year.

Interestingly, those earning up to Rs12 million annually, or Rs1 million per month, also see their tax burden rise by the same amount, reflecting a uniform approach to higher income brackets. Despite these changes, the government has maintained the income tax exemption threshold at Rs50,000, providing relief to lower-income earners.

However, tax liabilities have risen across all other salary levels. For instance, individuals earning Rs100,000 per month will now pay Rs2,500 monthly, up from Rs1,250 previously.

The salaried group alone contributed approximately Rs330 billion in tax revenues over the past 11 months while projections indicate this figure could reach Rs360 billion by the end of the fiscal year, marking a remarkable 36% increase.

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