This is a tough task for the NB
For the longest time, Bangladesh has had a problem with its tax base, with many citizens refusing to pay tax, or using loopholes to pay a lesser amount.
In this regard, we appreciate the government’s rather ambitious attempt at widening the tax base, setting the National Board of Revenue’s (NBR) earnings at 40% higher than that of the outgoing fiscal year FY2018-19.
But such a drastic change will not happen overnight.
For the NBR to be able to collect the tax owed to the government, it must be empowered with the resources required to carry out a tough collection drive within the country, and ensure as much of the taxable income available is collected upon.
That is not to say that the new budget has not kept this in mind.
With promises of establishing a tax office in every upazila, and keeping non-taxable income below Tk2.5 lakh per year for the fifth consecutive year, a more generous intake when it comes to tax revenue is not unlikely.
This is a tough task for the NBR and, in the coming year, the organization will have its job cut out to ensure that the revenue target is met.
At this juncture, implementation will remain key, with it becoming necessary that the authorities follow through with its promise: Expending resources on tax collection, making it easier for citizens to pay their taxes, in addition to punishing those who try to weasel out of their duties as citizens of this country.