FBR reviews SRO regime

KARACHI: The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has finalised process to rationalise the statutory regulatory orders (SROs) regime as per the International Monetary Fund’s (IMF) conditions on new loan programme, and will announce it by the end of 2013.

According to the sources, the exemptions and concessions will be rationalised and such facilities will be given to only export-oriented industries. They said, “The concessions will not be eliminated completely and the export-oriented sectors will be facilitated with these services because the manufacturing activities have already been disturbed owing to the power crisis and poor law & order situation.”

It is pertinent to mention that the revenue loss owing to exemptions or concessions has increased to Rs239.53b in the fiscal year 2012-13 as compared to previous fiscal year’s tax loss of Rs205.92b. During the last fiscal year, the tax losses through SRO regime had reached Rs37.43 billion level in sales tax and Rs119.7 billion in the customs duties.

The sources also disclosed that the partly removal of SROs was one of the conditions of the IMF on fresh bailout package through which Pakistan would get $6.64 billion. They added that the International Monetary Fund had been given assurance of eliminating SROs, which would be announced by the end of December this year.