Mian Nasser Hyatt Maggo, President FPCCI, has said that the business, industry and trade community of Pakistan unanimously opposes the imposition of mandatory digital and online payments in Pakistan. He was referring to a new law, i.e. The Tax Laws (Third Amendment) Ordinance 2021. The new law makes it mandatory to make all business and commercial transactions exceeding Rs. 250,000/= through online and digital channels.
Mian Nasser Hyatt Maggo also clarified that he never hailed the imposition of mandatory digital payments for business transactions; instead, he only hailed 40-day hold in its coming into force. So that, the business community and the government can sit together and find out a solution of the issue. FPCCI was misquoted in a few newspapers few days back on the issue, he added.
Mian Nasser Hyatt Maggo added that when the new law was promulgated, FPCCI immediately escalated the issue with the relevant authorities and pointed out the challenges posed by mandatory online and digital payments as Pakistan’s economy runs on the sales made on post-dated cheques and credit is usually for 2-3 months; and, the businesses cannot comply with this condition in the new ordinance in any way. Additionally, there are always part or delayed payments involved, based on trust and business practices of the country, when it comes to large B2B sales.
Relevant Read: HBL digital banking system goes offline
FPCCI Chief called out the unpreparedness of the government that merely after 2 days of the new ordinance came into force, the government was forced to suspend mandatory digital payments requirement for 40 days; because, the business transactions had come to a halt in just 2 days. He added that it shows how inappropriate and impractical the new conditionality is for business and economy of Pakistan.
Mian Nasser Hyatt Maggo said that it is mind-boggling that the cash and cheque transactions by businesses would be treated as income instead of expenditure, if the new ordinance comes into force along with mandatory digital payments requirement. This kind of harsh and illogical law will result in non-compliance and street agitation by SMEs, he added.
FPCCI strongly feels that there will be no way the country can switch to mandatory digital payments. Additionally, the payments through cheques are perfectly legal and documented.
Mian Nasser Hyatt Maggo, as President FPCCI, has reiterated that FPCCI is looking forward to have detailed discussions with the honourable Minster of Finance & Revenue and FBR on the issue at the earliest.