NBR for reforming VAT to uniform rate system

Chairman of the National Board of Revenue (NBR) Nojibur Rahman recently (Monday) said the NBR has now no choice but to implement the Value Added Tax and Supplementary Duty Act. The Chairman said global policy on finance and trades have been undergoing reform in terms of capacity building to ensure sustainable development of economy. Taking consideration of the reforming policy of G-7 and China, NBR is willing to take partnership with stakeholders like ICAB to generate more revenues through change of its revenue collection policies, he added. Change is permanent, NBR value this phenomenon and come up with policy reform initiatives to create a revenue culture in the country, he said.

Member Conference PictureStressing on own resources to promote trade and development, he said NBR is committed to the people and the country for development. Appreciating the zero tolerance policy to corruption, he said ICAB could play a very important role in NBR’s VAT reforming policy and the process of increasing revenue collection of the government.

As chief guest he made the remarks while addressing the members’ conference of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Bangladesh (ICAB) on ‘From Differential to Uniform Rate System in Bangladesh: Political Economy of Reforming Value Added Tax’ at the ICAB auditorium on Monday evening. Barrister Jahangir Hossain Member (VAT policy), NBR was also present as special guest. Former ICAB president Dr Jamaluddin Ahmed presented the keynote paper at the conference while ICAB President Kamrul Abedin FCA gave address of welcome. The conference was moderated by ICAB Council Member and Past President Md. Humayun Kabir FCA.

Nojibur Rahman said ICAB is the first professional body that has invited NBR to come and discuss about the implementation process of the Act. Parliament passed the new VAT and SD Act 2012 on November 27, 2012.

Barrister Jahangir Hossain in his short presentation described the benefit tax payers perspectives including online environment, limited intervention for tax authority, option for amendment for return, expansion of areas of input tax credit, transaction value, availability of list of registered entities, etc, under the new VAT Act comprehensively.

ICAB President Kamrul Abedin FCA said following the changing global economic scenario, the roles of relevant Professionals in the process of implantation of VAT policy is very important. He said more discussion is required to evaluate new VAT law for Bangladesh which is likely to be implemented as a uniform VAT replacing differential rate so that it could remove inherent weakness of earlier Act and be compatible with international best practices.

He said that the Taxation and Corporate Laws Committee (TCLC) of ICAB has been working deligently on Taxation, VAT, Budget Proposal and other Acts and Regulatory matters. In response to NBR letter, ICAB within stipulated time has submitted its recommendations to NBR for consideration in budget proposal for 2016 – 2017, he added.

The keynote presenter & former ICAB president Dr Jamaluddin Ahmed put forward some recommendations which is called for immediate implementation of the Act, digitalization of VAT, arrangement of extensive training for officials and VAT registered organizations, formation of an Independent Revenue Commission, removing fiscal bureaucracy with economic knowledge, economic impact of withdrawal of supplementary duty, establishment of a quantitative projection, rewards and punishment culture, Substantial increase in coordination Tax; VAT, and other laws in the new Bangladesh. He also suggested that as the business and professional organizations are not equipped for the readiness assessment to implement of new law into practice and the enactment of the law may be delayed for a year.