Inside Financial Markets
FBR urges traders, taxpayers to use of electronic payment facility - Inside Financial Markets

FBR urges traders, taxpayers to use of electronic payment facility

– Associated Press of Pakistan

The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) on Monday urged the taxpayer and traders to use E-Payment facility for convenient and hassle free payment of all FBR taxes and some provincial taxes.

The board in continuation reforms and modernization drive, had introduced the E-Payment facility to facilitate taxpayers, according to an FBR press statement issued here Monday.

On the one hand, traders could electronically pay all import duties and taxes through customs computerized system WeBOC at ports and border stations across Pakistan, said an FBR press statement.

The taxpayers could also electronically pay income tax, sales tax and Federal Excise duty sitting in their homes.

“E-Payment system provides round the clock facility to taxpayers and traders to make online payment of customs duties and other FBR taxes as well as provincial cess and stamp duty,” the statement added.

The facility is available through internet and mobile banking by using more than 15000 ATMs of 16000 Over the Counters (OTC) bank branches of commercial banks spreading across the country.

The taxpayers’ confidence and interest in E-payment was growing fast and it can be gauged from the fact that the proportion of number of E-payments of Income Tax, Sales Tax and Federal Excise Duty has increased from 6.26% of total payments during July to December 2019 to 40.5% during same period of 2020.

Similarly the proportion of amount deposited in these E-payments has increased from 13.55% of total payments to 76.5% during the comparative periods.

E-payment facility has greatly helped the traders and other taxpayers’ during the COVID-19 pandemic since all transactions can be completed without physical interaction.

Currently 18.6% of import duties and taxes are being collected by Pakistan Customs through E-Payment system. More than 80,000 consignments consisting of nearly 22% of total imports were cleared in WeBOC through E-Payment in the last 6 months.

Apart from major customs stations including Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad and Peshawar, the facility is also being availed by importers in remote areas like Taftan and Khunjerab.

The board urged the traders and other taxpayers to utilize E-Payment facility as it reduces their cost of doing business and contributes significantly towards improving the ease of doing business.

The facility also expedites the clearance of goods, enhances transparency in the duty payment mechanism and ensures timely revenue reconciliation.

Acknowledging E-payment as a major step towards trade facilitation, World Trade Organization’s Trade Facilitation Agreement also promotes the use of electronic payment methods amongst the traders.

FBR has launched an awareness campaign to enhance the use of E-payment facility. In this regard, a number of seminars have been conducted to educate trade bodies and Customs Agents about the benefits of E-Payment.

The traders can also take benefit of the FAQs section relating to E-payment available on the WeBOC web page, the statement added.

Syed Zaki Hussain

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Inside Financial Markets was a joint publication of Pakistan Stock Exchange (PSX)and Society of Technical Analysts Pakistan (STAP)