Thursday, May 26, 2022

Sugar industry opposes tracking system

The Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) has begun discussions to deploy the Track & Trace System (TTS) in manufacturing units in an effort to reduce tax evasion in critical areas of the economy. The first meeting in this respect will take place on Monday at the FBR headquarters.

The FBR, in collaboration with the Pakistan Sugar Mills Association, has invited representatives from five sugar mills to advise on the TTS (PSMA).

However, the sugar sector has already raised misgivings about the idea, claiming that putting TTS sticker stamps on sugar packages would be impossible since they would fall off and help tax evaders.

Soon after taking over as head of the FBR, Muhammad Ashfaq Ahmed began the process of adopting TTS in the tobacco, cement, sugar, and fertilizer industries.

The sugar sector, on the other hand, has objected to the plan, arguing that the new technology could not be used for polypropylene bags because the stickers would not adhere to them.

The Pakistan Polypropylene Woven Sack Manufacturers Association (PPWSMA) requested Prime Minister Imran Khan in a letter to oppose the adoption of TTS and instead to print the Quick Response (QR) code on the bags.

In the letter, PPWSMA Chairman Iskandar Khan, who is also the PSMA Chairman, stated, “We have requested the FBR to impose a mandatory requirement for all polypropylene factories to print QR codes on bags produced for sugar, fertilizer, cement, wheat flour, wheat, pulses, rice, and animal feed, among other things.”

The installed QR code machine will be linked to a computer system with software to generate sales invoices showing the price and sales tax amount that is documented in the QR code, which will be verifiable/readable via a mobile phone app, allowing FBR to track any and all polypropylene bags produced for industrial packaging.

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