He was talking to a delegation of UK’s Department for International Development (DFID) in Islamabad on Tuesday. The delegation comprised High Commissioner of United Kingdom H.E. Mr. Phlip Barton, Mrs. Pauline Haupres, Mr. Richard Montgomery and Mr. Moazzam Malik.
The Finance Minister said that revenue collection has shown an increase of 16%, exports 5%, remittances by 9% and growth in the economy in the first quarter has been reported by Pakistan Bureau of Statistics at 5%. Besides, there has been an unprecedented increase in the Karachi Stock Exchange Index which has crossed the 27000 point.
He said the government has now chalked out a plan to increase the Foreign Exchange Reserves to 16 billion dollars by the end of the present year.
The delegation appreciated the economic policies of the present government and said that the United Kingdom is looking at ways to provide further assistance to Pakistan.
Mr. Moazzam Malik appreciated the economic policies of the present government and said that the United Kingdom is looking at ways to provide further assistance to Pakistan. This he said, was a testimony to the confidence in the policies of the present government.
Mr. Richard Montgomery, Head of DFID appreciated the decision of the government to publish Tax Directory for Parliamentarians.
During the meeting the Income Support Programme also came under discussion. It was assured that the Finance Ministry would make timely releases so that the beneficiaries of the programme get the money well in time.
The meeting was also attended by the senior officials of the Ministry of Finance.
Meanwhile, the Minister reviewed the performance of FBR for first six months of the current financial year and progress towards compilation of Tax Director for Parliamentarians.
Chairman FBR Tariq Bajwa said that FBR had collected 1031 billion till 31st of last month. It has refunded 56 billion rupees against Sales Tax compared to 44 billion rupees in the corresponding period last year.
The Finance Minister said that use of information technology for data collection is the way forward to increase revenues and widen tax base in the country. In this connection FBR officials should coordinate with organizations within the country as well as interact with His Majesty Royal Revenue Service United Kingdom and Turkey which are success stories in increasing and collection of taxes.
The Finance Minister said that while the increase in revenue collection is appreciable. FBR officials will have to redouble their efforts to meet the target as it is critical for the economy of the country.
The Finance Minister who also chairs a High Powered Committee to streamline and rationalize Statutory Revisionary Orders (SROs) directed FBR to hold its meeting more frequently so that an expeditious decision about SROs can be made at the earliest.
The meeting was attended by senior officials of FBR and Finance Ministry.