The Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif handed over the Privilege Cards to the top 100 taxpayers of different categories at Prime Minister’s office Auditorium today. The cards will be valid for one year. The ceremony was also attended by Mr. Ishaq Dar, Finance Minister and Chairman Federal Board of Revenue (FBR), Mr. Tariq Bajwa.
The scheme has been launched to promote a tax-compliant culture in the country and will recognize top 100 taxpayers, each year, who will be getting Excellence Awards by the Prime Minister, access to VIP lounges at airports, fast track clearance at immigration counters, issuance of gratis passports and a baggage allowance enhanced from 500 to Rs 5000 dollars.
“I am addressing to people who have contributed more to the taxes and played a prominent role in revitalizing the economy of Pakistan for the last one year. The ceremony has been convened to acknowledge your services for the nation”. The Prime Minister Muhammad Nawaz Sharif said in his address at the launch of Taxpayers' Privileges and Honour Card scheme.
Prime Minister asked to shun the Politics of past era, while referring to some political parties. PM added that now as we have entered the twenty first century yet some the political parties are talking about revolutions. Such actions do not favor the country. Their actions are only meant to destabilize the political progress and democracy”, PM told.
The Prime Minister said no one can be permitted to hinder the journey of progress at any cost and urged all political parties to join hands in the government’s development agenda for the betterment of the country.
Prime Minister said that Development cannot take place in days nor all the problems can be resolved overnight. We had to take hard decisions in order to put back the economy of Pakistan on track, PM added.
The Prime Minister said the problems that had been piling up for years, could not be resolved in few months and said the government was taking a number of long and short term measures to address all such issues including power shortage. PM said a number of development projects were underway in cooperation with China and expressed the hope that the results would be obvious soon.
PM also cited a number of power generation projects including two power houses of 1300 MW at Port Qasim, 660 MW at Thar, 1300 MW at Jamshoro and enhanced capacity project of 2500 MW at Tarbela dam. PM further said Neelum Jhelum project would also be operational by 2017.
He said there has been an increase of three percent in number of taxpayers in the country, while the fiscal deficit had declined to four per cent. He also mentioned the positive response of investors to the Euro Bonds adding that it speaks volumes about the success of government's economic policies.
Prime Minister said that the green line bus project Karachi is high priority project. “Supply of water scheme and Karachi-Lahore motorway project has also been initiated for karachi”.PM added.
The Prime Minister lauded Ishaq Dar for the increase in the foreign exchange reserves that had increased to Rs 14 billion dollars and hoped it will touch Rs 15 billion dollars mark, as promised by him in next few months.
Earlier while addressing the gathering, Mr.Ishaq Dar said “Privilege and Honour Cards have been issued to 100 top taxpayers in each of the following categories: salaried individuals, non-salaried individuals, Association of Persons and companies.”
If every single Pakistani pays his or her tax, the economy would be strengthened. He mentioned that 1, 20,000 persons had been issued notices to non-filers.