FTO: Taxpayer Confidence Grows in Refund Process, FBR Compliance Improves

Pakistan’s Federal Tax Ombudsman (FTO) reports a significant increase in taxpayer complaints regarding delayed tax refunds. This highlights ongoing concerns despite automation efforts.

Key Points:

  • Refund Delays: The FTO sees delayed tax refunds as a major concern, attributing it to a lack of mindset shift among tax officials even with automation.
  • Increased Complaints: Complaints against the FBR regarding tax administration have risen by 1,494 cases in the first five months of 2024 compared to 2023.
  • Improved Compliance: The FTO reports a positive trend in FBR compliance with its recommendations, with over 95% implemented in 2023.
  • Taxpayer Confidence: Taxpayers seem more confident of receiving legitimate refunds due to the FTO’s intervention and the FBR’s improved compliance.

FTO’s Role:

  • Addressing Taxpayer Grievances: The FTO investigates complaints against the FBR’s tax administration.
  • Expediting Refunds: The FTO’s timely intervention plays a crucial role in expediting legitimate tax refunds.
  • Oversight and Recommendations: The FTO issues recommendations to the FBR regarding tax administration and refund processes.

Looking Ahead:

While the FTO acknowledges improvements in FBR compliance, challenges remain. Streamlining procedures and ensuring a complete cultural shift within tax authorities are important aspects for a truly efficient refund system.

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