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President for increasing outreach of Federal Tax Ombudsman

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Lauds FTO for providing relief to traders and businessmen

ISLAMABAD: President Dr Arif Alvi has urged the need to increase the outreach of the Federal Tax Ombudsman (FTO) and create awareness about its role in providing speedy justice to complainants against the maladministration of customs and tax authorities.

He said that FTO was performing an outstanding job by providing speedy relief to traders and businessmen against the highhandedness of government authorities. The President made these remarks while talking to the Federal Tax Ombudsman (FTO), Dr Asif Mahmood Jah, who called on him, at Aiwan-e-Sadr,.

Dr Asif Mahmood Jah presented the Annual Report-2021 highlighting the performance and achievements of the tax Mohtasib. He informed that during the year 2021, 2816 fresh complaints were registered with FTO, whereas 333 carry forward cases from the previous years were also processed. Out of these,2867 cases were disposed of during 2021, he added. He further stated that 88.14 % of the decisions have been implemented by the concerned quarters.

The Ombudsman has decided refund claims amounting to Rs 8499.11 million and the amount was paid to the aggrieved taxpayers by the FBR, he added. He apprised that in order to facilitate the taxpayers and expeditiously resolve the complaints, FTO had started informal resolution of complaints in priority cases under Section 33 of FTO Ordinance, 2000.

The FTO further highlighted that the Ombudsman has provided a Sales Tax refund worth Rs 600 million to over nine thousand buyers of vehicles by declaring the collection of Sales Tax in excess of 12.5% from the complainants as contrary to law. He also informed the President that FTO has established facilitation desks at the International airports of Islamabad, Karachi, Quetta, Lahore and Peshawar and land border stations of Chaman and Torkham to facilitate traders and businessmen. He apprised the President that the FTO, with the assistance of trade bodies and associations, was conducting seminars and awareness sessions throughout the country to create awareness about its role in providing prompt and cost-effective justice against the maladministration of tax authorities.

The President expressed satisfaction over the performance of the FTO in providing swift justice to complainants in far-flung areas of the country.

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