In a significant development, the caretaker government has concluded the comprehensive restructuring plan for the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR).

The approval for this pivotal reform comes from the Apex Committee of the Special Investment Facilitation Council (SIFC), highlighting a crucial step towards enhancing efficiency and transparency in Pakistan’s tax administration.

According to reliable sources, the Apex Committee granted its approval for the FBR’s reforms and restructuring plan during its recent meeting. The caretaker government is now poised to move a summary for the approval of the FBR’s restructuring plan in the upcoming federal cabinet meeting.

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The decision to move the summary will follow the meticulous review of the minutes of the last SIFC committee meeting, ensuring a thorough examination of the proposed reforms. The anticipated summary aims at facilitating the implementation of a robust action plan geared towards restructuring Pakistan’s tax administration, thereby fortifying the internal governance mechanisms of the FBR.

As part of the ongoing reform initiative, the caretaker government is contemplating the establishment of a dedicated Customs Board to oversee the operations of Pakistan Customs. This strategic move aims to streamline and enhance the efficiency of customs affairs while ensuring a clear demarcation from the revenue collection mechanism.

It is expected that the revenue collection mandate will continue to be under the purview of the FBR. In line with this reform trajectory, the creation of a separate Inland Revenue Board is also under consideration, which will operate under the vigilant supervision of the Revenue Division.

This bifurcation is designed to address concerns related to smuggling and other illicit activities, providing a specialised focus on each aspect of tax administration.

Furthermore, as part of the tax reform programme, five federal secretaries, namely Finance, Industries and Production, National Food Security, Commerce, and Interior, are slated to become ex-officio members of the proposed Customs Board. This inclusion is envisioned to bring multidimensional expertise to the board, fostering collaboration among various sectors crucial for effective customs management.

The restructuring plan marks a pivotal moment in Pakistan’s efforts to modernise and fortify its tax administration system. The caretaker government’s commitment to transparency and efficiency is evident in these strategic reforms, setting the stage for a more resilient and responsive revenue collection framework.

The anticipated approval of the summary at the federal cabinet meeting will further propel the implementation of these transformative changes.