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Dhaka Tribune

NBR to net well-off people

Update : 08 Jun 2015, 06:14 PM

The National Board of Revenue is set to bring into tax net the well-off people in society to accelerate revenue collection. 

A series of drives will kick off from the coming fiscal year to tax those individuals, having assets like cars and houses, that are almost twice the number of existing taxpayers, said Finance Minister AMA Muhith.

The minister yesterday made the observation to journalists at the NBR headquarters in the capital, following a meeting with NBR officials. 

Muhith paid a visit to NBR to hear plans from the taxmen and to provide them with some guidelines on how to achieve the revenue target for fiscal year 2015-16.

“We have conducted a survey in Dhaka and some other areas on people having houses, cars and other assets. The number of such people is almost twice the number of existing 11 lakh taxpayers. We will ‘attack’ on them,” said Muhith.

NBR officials said the board was able to identify a number of wealthy individuals and organisations. Individual or corporate tax will be imposed on them from this year while surveys will continue and be expanded to other areas beyond the capital to net taxpayers.

“There are many individuals in upazila who are capable of paying tax. The only way to bring them into the net is continuation of survey,” Muhith told reporters, adding that there will be tax offices in all upazillas by 2018. 

Currently, NBR has tax offices in only 85 upazilas. With regard to revenue target Tk176,370 crore, Muhith said: “Target is ambitious undoubtedly, but NBR is capable to achieve it.”

The lion’s share will be generated from income tax wing which is Tk65,932 crore. The VAT collection target is Tk63,902 crore and customs duty Tk46,536 crore.

As to income tax, Muhith said major changes will be brought in corporate tax, which now contributes around 36% to 38% of the total income tax, as the government considers it the top revenue mobilisation sector. 

Currently, only around 12 lakh individuals and companies/organisations pay income tax in Bangladesh, according to NBR data.

As regards Value Added Tax (VAT), the minister said there will be 15% uniform rate in VAT, but that does not mean everyone has to pay 15% on their total income.

“Vat payers will have to pay 15% VAT only on their value additions,” Muhith assured.

The government is set to implement new VAT and Supplementary Duty Act-2012 from 2016. With the introduction of the law, all levels of business have to pay a unique and a single VAT rate at 15%. 

Regarding the supplementary duty on import, the minister said the duty will disappear overtime because of trade liberalistion.

The minister expected the board to be able to meet the target successfully as its size of manpower had been increased to 22,000 from 13,000 over the last six years. 

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