CBR to finalise arrangements for RTOs in Sindh

ISLAMABAD (December 31 2005): A CBR team has left for Karachi to finalise arrangements for setting up Regional Tax Offices (RTOs) in Sindh under the reform program.

Tax managers, including Member Tax Policy and Reforms and Member Human Resource Management (HRM), will hold meetings with Directors-General, LTU/MTU and heads of other regional tax departments to work out the exact workforce requirement and infrastructure needed to make RTOs to operate under one roof.

It is learnt that some CBR officials have objected that there is no need of creating another RTO at Karachi as the existing buildings of income tax or sales tax could be extended for the proposed Regional Tax Office in Karachi. The Board has asked Members sales tax and direct taxes to weigh the option of creating another RTO in Karachi.

The Finance Division has allocated a budget of Rs 2411.63 million for meeting the 'operational expenses' of RTOs in 2005-06. Out of total budget, Regional Tax Office (RTO), Karachi, has been allocated Rs 79.78 million.

Sources said that the new Member HRM is facing the biggest challenge of determining the workforce requirements for the RTOs and utilisation of staff who would become surplus due to the ongoing automation and creation of reformed units. Member HRM is the sole person who would decide about the fate of persons who could not be adjusted within the reformed units.

He is also responsible to assess the future training requirements of the staff and officers based on skills gap analysis and also to formulate proposals for the readjustment of the surplus staff. It is yet to be seen whether Member HRM would be able to handle this gigantic task by formulating a clear policy of the surplus staff and a transparent procedure for the appointment of tax officials at the specialised positions under the 'Internal Job Postings' procedure.

The RTOs have not yet been made functional, as the CBR HRM and TPR Wings are finalising workforce plan and other requirements needed for 12 tax offices across the country.

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