A sustainable growth in revenue collection is a must for the economic progress of a developing country like Bangladesh, experts said on Wednesday. There should be sustainable growth of revenue generation which should increase each year compared to that of the previous year. “As the size of the budget increases every year, we have to enhance the target of revenue collection. It may be that we cannot meet the target, but it's not a failure because there are some practical reasons behind it,” said NBR Chairman, Mosharraf Hossain Bhuiyan on Wednesday.
Mentioning that manpower shortage in the NBR, and lack of awareness among people are among the reasons for failure to meet the revenue target, he said the government is trying to strengthen the National Board of Revenue (NBR), and at the same time, laying due emphasize on tax, meaning bringing many more able people within the tax net.
The NBR Chairman came up with the remarks while addressing the inaugural session of a training programme on budget reporting for members of the Economic Reporters Forum (ERF), organised by the Press Institute of Bangladesh (PIB) at Siddheswari, in Dhaka.Mosharraf Hossain commented that although the businessmen claim that they pay VAT much more, they do not pay VAT, usually the common people pay VAT, businessmen feel that this is also part of their profit, so they do not want to pay full VAT.
"In case of export or import of goods, many dishonest businessmen dodge duty. In case of Tk 10 lakh, they somehow manage to dodge from Tk 2 to 5 lakhs, and their mindset is, if they import by paying more duty, they cannot earn more profit", Bhuiyan added.Regarding the upcoming national budget, the NBR Chairman said, the budget will be placed in parliament on June 13, and till then, everything will be kept secret. Although some reporters somehow manage to bring out some allocations in different sectors, they should not publish reports before placement of the budget in the interest of the nation.
Regarding implementation of VAT Act from 1st July this year, the NBR Chairman said, the act will be implemented in a way that it may not create any burden on people or businessmen. "Providing Electronic machine to the businessmen for collecting VAT properly is under process. Probably by June it will not be possible to start distributing electronic machines, it may take 3 to 4 more months. It will be possible to implement VAT Act in some particular rates including 15%, 10%, 7% and 5% from the next fiscal year.
PIB and ERF jointly organised the training workshop for the economic reporters ahead of the national budget for the fiscal 2019-20. Member of NBR, Kanan Kumar Roy, Special News Editor of the Daily Star, Shawkat Hossain Masum, and Joint Editor of Financial Express, Shamsul Huq Bashunia, were the resource persons on the first day of the 3-day course. DG, PIB, Zafar Wazed presided over the inaugural session while President of ERF, Saif Islam Dilal, and General Secretary, S M Rashidul Islam were also present on the occasion.