Sindh govt to bring 2.4m Karachi housing units into tax net

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KARACHI: The Sindh government is all set to bring at least 2.4 million new housing units into the tax net by conducting a fresh property survey, Pakistan Today learnt on Thursday.

In this connection, Sindh’s Excise, Taxation and Narcotics Control Department (E&TD), in collaboration with the World Bank (WB), has worked out a plan to conduct a fresh survey in the port city targeting more than 2.4 million housing units to be taxed.

Presently, the excise and taxation authorities are collecting property tax at rates that were fixed in 2001 whereas property prices have increased manifold since then, sources said.

The first property survey of the Karachi city was conducted in 1968 while the second survey was conducted after a gap of 32 years i.e. 2001. Due to this reason, the provincial exchequer has and continues to suffer heavy losses.

A Punjab-based survey firm was assigned the task to conduct a survey of Sukkur city. sources said, adding that the same company would now start surveying the port city.

Moreover, sources disclosed that annually, a revenue of Rs2 billion was collected under the head of property tax which would be enhanced up to Rs7 billion after the fresh survey.

“There are only 1.2 million housing units whose owners pay taxes to the government,” sources informed, adding that housing units to be taxed in the city would stand at 3.6 million after the updated survey.

A senior officer of E&TD, on the condition of anonymity, told Pakistan Today that the paperwork to deal with this issue has been completed and the survey process would begin within a few days.

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