OECD membership to bring long term economic benefits: Dar

ISLAMABAD, Sep 28 (APP): Minister for Finance Muhammad Ishaq Dar here on Wednesday said that membership of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) would bring long term economic benefits and help in controlling tax evasion and tax avoidance.

Addressing a seminar on “Multilateral convention on mutual
administrative assistance in tax matters,” he said that it had took 33 months time to become a member of the powerful organization in order to eradicate the menace of offshore tax envision.

The event was organized by Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) with the prime objectives to share the knowledge and expertise of relevant stakeholders about the OECD convention.

He said negotiation for OECD membership was started in 2013 after the Prime Minister accorded the approval and prior to it, there were 103 countries and Pakistan is the 104th member country.

The minister informed that on September 14 the OECD Secretary General endorsed Pakistan’s membership and now it was the full signatory of the organization.

Such treaty was vital to set the new dimensions of national
economy to take it forward on the path of sustainable development and prosperity.

Pakistan, he said was now negotiating for signing the ‘anti
bribery convention’ as 40 countries across the glob were its members, adding that it would bring further transparency in national economic system.

Highlighting the economic gains of government, he said that
during last 3 years revenue collections grew by 60 percent with and average growth of 20 percent per annum.

He said that foreign exchange reserves increased considerably and recorded at highest level of US$ 23 billion as compared to the lowest reserves of 2013.

The world renowned financial and credit rating agencies had
recognized the economic gains and development of the country and they had upward revised its credit ratings, he added.

The minister stressed the need for separating the economy from the politics and urged the need for signing a charter of economy for continuity of economic policies for rapid socio economic development of the country.

Ishaq Dar also appreciated the role of Chairman FBR and his
whole team for realizing the OECD membership and expressed the hope that it would also achieve the revenue targets fixed for current fiscal year.

Speaking on the occasion Special Assistant to Prime Minister
on Revenue, Haroon Akhtar Khan said that it was a great achievement made in a short spain of time.

He said that government was determined to enhance the revenue collection by browning the tax base, introducing business friendly polices and reducing tax burden from the people who were already paying their taxes.

Addressing the conference, Chairman FBR said the treaty would enable to curb tax envision as all the member states have committed to implement all international standards on exchange of information.