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Muhith eyes 40 lakh taxpayers by FY ’20

50Finance Minister AMA Muhith wants the number of taxpayers to increase to 40 lakh by FY 2019–20 from the existing 11 lakh regular taxpayers.
However, he observed: “It would be challenging to increase the number
to four million by the end of the tenure of this government.”
Muhith made this observation while addressing a programme held
on the occasion of National Tax Day 2015 as the chief guest at a city hotel.
Crests and citations were given away to the highest and long-time taxpayers.
Presided over by National Board of Revenue (NBR) Chairman Md Nojibur Rahman, state minister for finance and planning, MA Mannan, and Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industries (FBCCI) president, Abdul Matlub Ahmad also addressed the programme.
The finance minister said of Bangladesh’s population of 16 crore, only 11 lakh submit their tax returns, which is less than one per cent. “If the figure were 16 lakh, than I could count one per cent of the total population as taxpayers,” he said.
“If the number of taxpayers reaches 4 million, then the government could ensure different facilities for the citizens,” he asserted. Muhith said the government has been trying to establish a friendly relationship with the taxpayer during the past seven years in order to encourage the people to submit their tax returns. For this reason, the government has been organising tax fairs, he noted.
MA Mannan said the government has been trying to ensure a hassle-free tax returns system. “Now, income tax is not a frightening system. Rather, the NBR is helping taxpayers in their submissions of tax returns,” he added. FBCCI President Matlub Ahmed said the people earlier feared the NBR when they submitted their tax returns. But the situation has changed, and the people want to pay their taxes, he said. He proposed selecting at least one taxpayer as a Commercially Important Person (CIP) in each district.
“We want four-lane, eight-lane highways, tunnels and Mass Rapid Transit (MRT) systems—but how can the government fulfil these requirements without taxes and revenues?” the FBCCI president asked. He also sought pension payments for taxpayers in their old age.
Later, the finance minister handed over crests and citations to the highest and long-time taxpayers. A total of 20 individuals and business firms, who have been selected as the highest taxpayers in FY 2014–15, received tax cards, crests and citations.
In the personal category, Hazi Md Kaus Miah, Mohammad Yusuf, Rubayat Farzana Hossain, Laila Hossain, Hosne Ara Hossain, Khawza Tajmahal, MA Haider Hossen, Golam Dastagir Gazi, Md Nasir Uddin, and Abdul Muktadir received tax cards.
On the other hand, in the company category were included Chevron Bangladesh, Karnaphuli Fertilizer Company Ltd (KAFCO), Infrastructure Development Company Ltd, Bangladesh Export Processing Authority (BEPZ), Bangladesh Petroleum Exploration and Production Company Ltd (BAPEX), Toma Construction and Co. Ltd, Central Depository Bangladesh Ltd, Commercial Bank of Ceylon plc, the Security Printing Corporation Bangladesh Ltd, and Uttara Finance and Investment Ltd.
Caption: Finance Minister AMA Muhith and NBR Chairman Md Nojibur Rahman join a rally brought out by NBR marking the National Income Tax Day in the capital on Tuesday.