Tax reforms help cut sales tax refund period to 10 days

KARACHI (September 16 2003): The new Sales Tax House, established here by the Central Board of Revenue (CBR) under Tax Reforms, provides fast and efficient service to the taxpayers, cutting refund period from four months to 10 days.

The main theme of the new set-up is the tax facilitation, which occupies most of the ground floor of the spacious building.

Giving details of the facilitation, the Collector of Sales Tax, Headquarters, Sohail Afzal, said on Monday that the new Sales Tax House had been equipped with modern information technology and trained staff to provide efficient service to the taxpayers.

He said that extensive groundwork, including process re-engineering, was done under the tax reforms, before creating the new five-star facility for the taxpayers.

All taxpayers, received at the reception, would have the facility of meeting the concerned Assistant Collector in the visitors' chambers, who would readily attend to their problems, he said, adding no visitor would be allowed to proceed directly to the refund or audit sections.

The Tax Facilitation Officer, Shahab Imam, told Business Recorder that a list of the visitors was prepared daily and the purpose of their visit was mentioned on the slip issued to him.

“Most of the problems are resolved the same day, but in cases where some information about the status of refund claim is concerned, the visitor is informed about the date of payment,” he said.

The Sales Tax House is attending about 150 visitors daily, mostly related to refund cases.

There is a separate refund claim receiving counter, which receives soft and hard copy of the claim and issues a receipt.

The staff also endorses a fourth copy of the shipping bill, which is required for payment of rebate.

All refund claims, pending before the new set-up, have been reprocessed and arranged in queue for payment.

The new Sales Tax House has been created on functional basis after merging East and West collectorates. It is manned by three collectors.

— The Collector, Headquarters, who looks after issues related to registration, assessment and processing of sales tax returns, taxpayers facilitation and education and Human Resource Development.

— The Collector, Audit, Nisar Ahmed Khan, takes care of issues related to audit of registered persons, risk-based audit strategy, recovery of undisputed liability, matters related to external audit etc.

— The Collector, Enforcement, Khawaja Tanvir, is incharge of processing and sanctioning of refund claims, post-refund audit, department's representation before adjudication and appellate forums, Central Excise Act, industrial surveys required under concessionary notifications and dealing with non-filers and non-traceable units.

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