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Political unrest blamed for shortfall in tax collection

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nrbStaff Reporter
National Board of Revenue (NBR) has failed to achieve the revised target of income tax for 2013-14 fiscal for the first time in last four years.
The shortfall in income tax collection is around Tk 1000 crore, NBR sources said on condition of anonymity.
The sources blamed the failure on the unprecedented political violence during the first half of the immediate past fiscal that affected the income of people, especially the businessmen.
A senior official of the NBR said that the shortfall may reduce slightly after the final calculation, which will be available next week.
The government in the 2013-14 budget fixed the income tax collection target at Tk 48,300 crore.
Later, Finance Minister AMA Muhith cut the target at Tk 44,360 crore in the revised budget.
Finance Minister too cited political turmoil for lowering the target saying that the political disturbance hit the revenue collection a lot like the other sectors of the country.
The collection from the large taxpayers’ unit (LTU), where all banks, corporate entities and big business houses are included, also saw a shortfall of around Tk 800 crore in the last fiscal.
NBR officials also said that decline in operating profit of private commercial banks especially in the first half of the fiscal is another reason for this shortfall.
According to NBR data banks have paid 32 per cent less revenue than expected. The shortfall triggered, as tax collection dropped from the large taxpayers, especially from banks, he added.
On the other hand, NBR officials are expecting a jump of collection from the banks in the coming days as the operating profits for most banks rose in the first half of the calendar year due to the return of normalcy on the political front.
Primary figures from 15 commercial banks showed that their profits between January and June increased 10 percent year-on-year to Tk 3,731 crore.
Imports rose 18.08 percent as of April of the just-concluded fiscal year. It went down by 5.60 percent during the same period of fiscal 2012-13. In the month of April alone, imports shot up 23.47 percent, which was down by 3 percent in the same month last year.