Home / Bangladesh / NBR seeks bank statements of Grammeenphone

NBR seeks bank statements of Grammeenphone

29The National Board of Revenue (NBR) has asked all commercial banks to submit account statements of Grameenphone Ltd on an urgent basis, apparently to investigate possible tax evasion by the country’s biggest mobile phone operator. In a letter sent to all commercial banks recently, the NBR has asked them to submit detail statements of all transaction by Grameenphone from January 1 to December 31, 2013, sources confirmed. The letter, signed by Md Ataul Haque, deputy audit commissioner of Large Taxpayer Unit, asked the banks to urgently send all the statements to him. It also mentioned that the reports were required to settle a tax-related case involving the mobile operator.   In the letter, the Tax Identification Number (TIN) of Grameenphone was stated as 070-200-7557, and its address as GP House, Bashundhara, Dhaka. However, the letter did not mention a deadline for submission of the statement reports. On condition of anonymity, a senior NBR official said the account information was actually needed to   investigate whether the company has dodged any taxes or not.  The official also said the NBR has taken the step to examine Grameenphone’s audit report and account statement as the operator has previous record of evading taxes. In 2014, the NBR accused Grameenphone Ltd of evading around Tk 400 crore in taxes through declaring lower income for the 2012-13 fiscal. The tax evasion was detected when an NBR investigation found discrepancies between the company’s VAT returns on net sales and its income tax return submitted for the 2012-13 tax year. NBR officials said the operator had revealed its true income to the VAT unit to get a waiver. According to an NBR report, Grameenphone concealed income to the tune of Tk 1,412.96 crore in the returns submitted to the tax division for the 2012–13 fiscal. The mobile operator paid less income tax by showing lower profits from the sale of SIM cards, recharge cards and talk time, it added. A copy of the NBR report has been obtained by The Independent. As a result of the suspected fraud, the government was deprived of Tk 394.15 crore in revenue. However, the company denied the accusation at the time.