The National Board of Revenue has taken an initiative to relax selection criteria for the highest VAT-payers award to honour more businesses.
Officials said that the condition of payment of 10 per cent higher value-added tax than that of the previous fiscal year by a business for being eligible of getting the award would be relaxed as many compliant and large businesses are deprived of the honour due o stiff selection criteria.
Every year, the VAT authorities don’t find enough eligible VAT payers for the award, particularly at the district level, due to this criterion.
Business may not always grow by 10 per cent every year, officials observed.
As per the existing award policy, a total of 192 businesses under three categories—manufacturing, services and trade—in the district level are supposed to get the award for payment of the highest amount of VAT.
NBR found only 149 and 133 eligible businesses in 2017 and in 2016 respectively for the award.
The revenue board also awards nine businesses at national level.
NBR found that the top nine businesses that were awarded with the highest VAT payers trophy in last few years were not even among the top 30 highest of VAT payers in terms of volume of payment.
Businesses are required to meet four basic criteria to become eligible for the award.
As per the policy, businesses convicted under the income tax, VAT or customs laws in the particular financial year, having legal dispute under trial in the court or tribunal, bank defaulters or not achieved 10 per cent growth in VAT payment are now not considered for the highest VAT payers’ award.
In this situation, VAT implementation and information technology wing, as per directive of NBR high-ups, has recently requested the VAT policy wing to take initiative for amending the policy.
The revenue board, however, decided not to relax the conditions related to compliance with the tax laws and bank borrowing.
A high official of the NBR said that it would not be wise to relax the compliance related conditions.
The condition related to growth in VAT payment can be relaxed considering the overall pace of business activities in the country, he said.
He, however, said that most of the large businesses never got the award at national level mainly because of legal dispute and compliance issues.
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