FBR fails to meet revenue target as deficit reaches Rs214bn

Shabbar Zaidi says revenue collection in 5MFY20 is 17pc higher compared to last year

ISLAMABAD: As the request for a downward revision in the revenue target has been rejected by International Monetary Fund (IMF), it seems that it would be difficult for the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) to meet the ambitious target of collecting Rs5.5 trillion set for the current fiscal year (FY20).

The revenue board collected around Rs1,614 billion in the first five months (July-Nov) of FY20, against the envisaged target of Rs1,828.4 billion.

According to FBR Chairman Shabbar Zaidi, the board collected Rs334 billion in November 2019 as against the target of Rs381.4 billion.

He, however, said that revenue collection surged by over Rs53 billion in November 2019 when compared with the corresponding month of last year (Nov 2018: Rs280.717 billion).

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Zaidi further claimed that the collection in the first five months of FY20 increased by 17pc as compared to the corresponding months of last year.

After collecting Rs1,614 billion in 5MFY20, the FBR would have to collect Rs3,889 billion in the seven remaining months (Dec-June) to achieve the desired target.

The ambitious target seems almost impossible for FBR keeping in mind the trend of revenue collection in the first five months.

Meanwhile, in order to meet the target of Rs1,295 billion set for the second quarter (October to December) of FY20, FBR needs to collect Rs641 billion in December 2019 (it collected Rs654 billion in Oct and Nov).

Similarly, to meet the Rs2.3 trillion half-year target, the FBR would need to collect Rs752 billion in December. FBR, as per the economists, is left with no option but to approach IMF for a downward revision in the tax collection target.

During the first quarter (July-October) of FY20, the FBR had collected Rs1,280 billion against the target of Rs1,447 billion.

FBR had missed the October revenue target Rs56 billion, September revenue target by Rs50 billion, August target by Rs59 billion and July target by around Rs10 billion.

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Ghulam Abbas
Ghulam Abbas
The writer is a member of the staff at the Islamabad Bureau. He can be reached at [email protected]
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