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International donors and CBR agree on revamping terms of reference

ISLAMABAD (January 21 2003) : To completely revamp the tax machinery, the international donors and Central Board of Revenue (CBR) agreed in principle on the terms of reference outlined for restructuring of the tax machinery, a senior CBR official told Business Recorder on Monday.

The terms of reference encompass pace of tax reforms, Large Taxpayer Unit (LTU), Karachi, Medium Taxpayer Unit (MTU), Lahore, Human Resource (HR) Development and integration of information technology-related issues.

IMF review mission and World Bank (WB) held a detailed meeting with the CBR high-ups to review the progress on tax reforms.

CBR consultants Maxwell Stamp were also present on the occasion.

The mission would hold separate meetings with the CBR members in the coming days.

IMF has expressed satisfaction on the current pace of restructuring and asked the Central Board of Revenue (CBR) to focus on information technology (IT) and infrastructure having ample facilities for taxpayers.

“The most important task is to integrate the IT-related issues under the technical assistance of the IMF mission.

IT would be applied to improve the efficacy of sales tax, customs and income tax”, he maintained.

In this regard, the CBR must spend a major chunk (90 percent) of donor funds for marketing and improvement of IT infrastructure.

He said that information technology and infrastructure would be the target areas with special emphasises on the location and accommodation of the tax buildings.

IMF would visit Large Taxpayer Unit (LTU), Karachi on January 23 and Medium Taxpayer Unit (MTU), Lahore on January 24 accompanied by some of the senior tax officials.

The mission would review the overall performance of the LTU, Karachi and overlook the system operating for largest taxpaying units of the country.

The performance indicators of different collectorates include criteria for the transfer/postings of tax officials in the field formations.

A pre-determined system was required to evaluate the performance of tax officials for correct placement of their transfer/postings.

The CBR has on principle agreed to replace the current circle based system with the organisational structure on functional basis, the official added.

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