Former Finance Minister Miftah Ismail shed light on taxing the elite to address Pakistan’s financial challenges, asserting that without such measures, the country’s economic stability could be at risk.
Ismail has proposed that the government should focus on reducing expensesas a primary means of improving the overall economic outlook. By implementing strategies to control spending, Pakistan can pave the way for a more secure financial future.
Ismail has criticized past leadership for increasing taxes on salaried individuals in 2017, contending that it unfairly burdened them. He has pointed out the significant disparity in tax collection between salaried workers and large-scale exporters, underscoring the need for a more equitable approach to taxation, distributing the fiscal responsibility fairly across various sectors of the economy.
The former minister has highlighted the absence of property and agriculture taxes in certain provinces and expressed his opposition to imposing taxes on retailers and wholesalers. He has previously advocated for measures such as load shedding during the summer to conserve energy, early market closures, raising gas prices during the winter, and shifting the load to electrical appliances.
Mr Ismail has also lent his support to the idea of closing markets at 8 pm as part of an energy conservation plan, all aimed at addressing energy consumption and promoting efficient resource utilization in Pakistan.
Earlier, IMF Chief, Kristalina Georgieva, has requested Pakistan to ‘increase taxation on the wealthy and safeguard the welfare of the poor.’ She emphasized that these measures align with the desires of the Pakistani people.
IMF Chief, Georgieva made these remarks on the sidelines of the 78th United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) session in New York.
Following a meeting with Pakistan’s caretaker Prime Minister Anwaar-ul-Haq Kakar, Georgieva also shared her thoughts on a social media platform, formerly known as Twitter.
She mentioned their discussion on Pakistan’s economic prospects and the shared recognition of the need for robust policies to ensure economic stability, sustainable and inclusive growth, prioritized revenue collection, and protection of vulnerable populations in Pakistan.