FBR transfers/posts 18 officials of IRS & Customs Service

ISLAMABAD: Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has transferred and posted 15 officials of Grade20-19 of Inland Revenue Service and 3 officials of Grade 19-18 of Pakistan Customs Service.

Transfers/Postings of the following officers of (BS-19-20) of Inland Revenue Service are made with immediate effect and until further orders:-

Mr. Gholam Kazim Hosein (BS-20), Dr. Ikram Ghani (BS-20), Mr. Salim Raza Asif (BS-20), Mr. Hafiz Muhammad Ali Indhar (BS-20), Dr. Muhammad Akram Khan (BS-20), Dr. Muhammad Naeem (BS-19), Mr. Muhammad Imtiaz (BS-19), Dr. Hamid Ateeq Sarwar (BS-19), Mr. Ch. Muhammad Tarique (BS-19), Mr. Khalid Javed (BS-19), Mr. Ahmad Shuja Khan (BS-19), Dr. Ahmad Shahab (BS-19), Mr. Muhammad Abid Raza Bodla (BS-19), Mr. Afaque Ahmed Qureshi (BS-19) and Mr. Muhammad Shaukat Hayat Cheema (BS-19).

Transfers/Postings of the following officers of (BS-18-19) of Pakistan Customs Service are made with immediate effect and until further orders:-

Dr. Kamal Azhar Minhas (BS-19), Mr. Zahid Ali Baig (BS-19) and Mr. Ijaz Badshah (BS-18).

The Officers who are drawing performance allowance prior to issuance of this notification shall continue to draw this allowance on the new place of posting.

All above listed officers are requested to Relinquish/Assume charge, using online HRMS facility made available to FBR or by using their IJP logins.

Mr. Sarfraz Ahmad (IRS/BS-20) presently posted as CIR (Zone-II), RTO, Islamabad is assigned the “additional charge” of the post of CIR (WHT) RTO, Islamabad with immediate effect and until further orders in addition to his own duties.

The additional charge of CIR (Zone-XI) RTO-II, Lahore assigned to Mr. Asim Ahmad (IRS/BS-20) presently posted as CIR (WHT), RTO-II, Lahore vide Board’s Notification No 2024-IR-I/2013, dated 23.08.2013 is hereby withdrawn with immediate effect.

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Tokyo, Islamabad ties cordial: Ishaq Dar

ISLAMABAD: Minoru Kiuchi, Japanese Parliamentary Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs called on Finance Minister Ishaq Dar.

Welcoming the Japanese vice minister, Senator Ishaq Dar termed the relationship between the two countries as close and cordial. He thanked Japan for extending assistance in time of need and support for development projects in Pakistan.

Senator Ishaq also thanked Japan for supporting the recently concluded IMF programme with Pakistan. Dar said the depth of relationship between the two countries is not reflected in the current volume of trade which stands at $579 million. He stressed the need to explore avenues to further enhance bilateral trade and economic relations between Islamabad and Tokyo.

Japanese Vice Minister Minoru Kiuchi said that Prime Minister Shinzo Abe attaches great importance to the region especially Pakistan. Japan, he said views the region as a potential emerging economic region which can contribute towards the world economy.

The vice minister said that since the establishment of the diplomatic relations in 1952, both the countries have enjoyed good relations. Japan he said recognizes that the political and economic stability of Pakistan is significant for the prosperity of this region. He further said that the investors in Japan have high expectations from the present government in Pakistan and lauded the consolidation of democracy in the country.

Minoru Kiuchi, Japanese Parliamentary Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs reciprocated the views of Senator Ishaq Dar that there was an ample room to expand and strengthen economic relations between the two countries.

The senator said that Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has a vision to transform the economy of Pakistan and make it one of dynamic emerging economies of the world. In this connection he alluded to the manifesto of PML-N which clearly lays down a roadmap and a strategy to being out the country from its present economic problems and put it on a path of sustainable growth.

The prime minister, Dar said has been focusing to overcome the challenges faced in the energy sector as well as improvement in law and order in the country. In this connection he informed the Japanese vice minister that an All Parties Conference had unanimously come out with a resolve to address the law and order situation in the country.

Dilating on the economic agenda of the present government, Senator Ishaq Dar said that our manifesto stipulates enhancing economic relations with other countries based on the principle of “trade not aid”. The meeting was also attended by senior officials of the Ministry of Finance.

FPCCI urges customs agents to call off strike

ISLAMABAD: FPCCI President Zubair Ahmed Malik has suggested to All Pakistan Customs Agents Association (APCAA), Karachi Customs Agents Association (KCAA) and All Pakistan Bonded Carrier Association (APBCA) to call off their countrywide strike, which commenced from Tuesday, for an indefinite period against the FBR move of issuing recovery notices to customs agents and bonded carriers in International Security Assistance Force’s (ISAF) for missing containers scam.
According to the statement, President FPCCI said that the strike would hamper the clearance of goods at ports and is likely to result in demurrages on the consignments affecting the overall movement of goods across Pakistan.
He further lamented that more than 1,200 imports and 800 exports GDs at Karachi and Bin Qasim Ports on daily basis would come to a standstill with this strike. It will affect the timely shipment of goods and their clearance at ports which would result in a shortfall to the tune of Rs. 10 billion per day.
Zubair proposed that it would be in the national interest that instead of observing strike the associations concerned could negotiate their demands with FBR for settlement of their issues.

IMF delegation meets Ishaq Dar

ISLAMABAD: A four member delegation of International Monetary Fund comprising Mr. Jafar Mojarrad, Executive Director, Masood Ahmed, Director IMF, Mr. Jaffrey Franks, Mission Chief IMF and Mr. Mansoor Dailami, Senior Representative IMF called on Finance Minister Senator Mohammad Ishaq Dar at his office.

During the meeting which was held in a very cordial atmosphere both sides resolved that the purpose of the programme was to put Pakistan’s economy in a dynamic emerging market.

The IMF delegation congratulated the Finance Minister on the successful conclusion of the programme and said that the IMF would continue to work with Pakistan and augment its efforts through the entire process.

Mr. Jaffar Mojarrad said that IMF recognized the difficult economic situation faced by Pakistan and appreciated the hard decisions taken by the present government even before starting negotiations with IMF. This he said signalled the seriousness of purpose of the present government.

The IMF delegation was of the opinion that already Pakistan is witnessing the benefits of entering into a programme as international donors felt comfortable.

The IMF delegation informed the Finance Minister that there was a lively discussion when the programme was put on the agenda of the board and members evinced keen interest and support for the programme. This programme could be a turning point for the transformation of Pakistan’s economy, the delegation hoped.

Senator Ishaq Dar said that the July-August 2013 figures for tax revenue showed a growth of 20% as compared to two and a half percent in the last year, FBR he said had already issued notices to 10935 new assesses, there was a current account surplus of 46 million dollars in July 2013, growth of 9% in exports and record remittance of 1.4 billion dollars in July 2013. He said that he was encouraged by these results and confident that the targets set out by the government would be achieved as “things are shaping up”.

In response to an offer made by IMF delegation for technical assistance Senator Ishaq Dar thanked the IMF for the offer.

Senator Ishaq Dar said that despite inheriting a fragile economy because of the inactions on the part of previous government, the present government had taken hard decisions to stabilize the economy and introduce structural reforms

The Finance Minister expressed the confidence that both the sides will work actively in future as well. The meeting was also attended by Chairman FBR and seniors officials of Ministry of Finance and Economic Affairs Division.

PTAA wants postponement of new tax form

ISLAMABAD: The Pakistan Tax Advisers Association (PTAA) has asked the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) to postpone the draft amended income tax return form till 2014 as the form likely be finalised on Tuesday.

PTAA Chairman Javed Iqbal Qazi said that the FBR should extend the last date for submission of returns by at least 75 days to compensate the taxpayers. He said that the taxpayers and legal fraternity should not be ‘punished’ as the FBR did not discharge its duty in time.

The last date for submission of income tax return is September 30. The draft return form was issued on August 26 to seek comments from the taxpayers within 15 days.

The chairman said that the changes, made in section 114 and 116 of the income tax ordinance through Finance Act 2013, could not be applied retrospectively for tax year 2013. So the amendments pertain to tax year 2014 and not 2013, he added.

Dastgir given additional charge of Commerce Minister

ISLAMABAD: Privatisation Minister Engineer Khurram Dastgir Khan has assumed the additional charge of Ministry of Commerce and Textile, according to the notification issued by Cabinet Division.

Khurram Dastgir understands the problems of Ministry of Commerce and its attached departments as he has worked as Chairman Standing Committee of Commerce during the tenure of Pakistan People’s Party.

Khurram wants to investigate into the NICL scam and also approved Trade Development Authority of Pakistan (TDAP) Bill to give sovereign status to the corruption-hit organisation. Criminal hearing has already been started against former TDAP CEO Abid Javed.

No understanding with IMF on devaluation of rupee: Dar

ISLAMABAD: Finance Minister Ishaq Dar has categorically stated that there is neither any explicit nor implicit understanding with the IMF on the devaluation of rupee.

Speaking at the launch of the Sixth Annual Report of the Institute of Public Policy, Beacon House National University on Monday, the Finance Minister said that the issue of adjustment of rupee dollar parity was not even discussed. He urged the economic experts to refrain from issuing such speculative statements.

He said that Pakistan had to enter into the programme with IMF at a time when it was going through one of the most difficult economic phases in its history. He said that they had to approach IMF to beef up the dwindling Foreign Exchange Reserves as well as fulfill national obligations.

The Finance Minister said that he was grateful to the IMF for understanding Pakistan’s difficult economic situation and avoiding making unreasonable demands.

He reiterated that the commitments made by the government with the IMF would be met as they are in the interest of Pakistan and its economic future. He pointed out that Standard & Poor’s and Moody’s have given a positive outlook on Pakistan after a long time and the Overseas International Chambers of Commerce, which conducts regular surveys on business confidence, has raised its index for Pakistan from a negative of 34 to a positive of 2.

Mr Ishaq Dar said the World Bank and Asian Development Bank have agreed to recommence their support to Pakistan after a lapse of three years.

He said the outcomes of the reforms have been encouraging and during the month of July and August, FBR collected taxes to the tune of Rs 280 billion, which is 20 percent higher than the amount collected over the same period last year.