A new license scheme is underway to register every business and it will be a compulsory one.
The draft was open for the public for a week, and now they will send it to the cabinet for approval. Once approved, it will become a law.
So what will this new scheme be all about?
Here are the particulars of the proposed amendment.
1. Mandatory Registration
The registration under the proposed amendment will be compulsory for all businesses irrespective of their nature and size.
It means it will be compulsory to get a license for any type of business activity.
Will it be for street vendors too?
Off course. No exception.
The wording of the draft leaves no chance for any exemption.
Any person engaged in any business, profession, or vocation shall apply for the license.
So get ready to register your business once the new regulations come into force.
2. Application With a Mobile Phone
If you have a mobile phone and internet facility, it will be easy.
You will have to go nowhere.
Just log in to the IRIS i.e., the online system of FBR and fill in the form.
The system generated business license will be emailed to the provided email address.
3. Application Without a Mobile Phone
If you don’t have a mobile phone or internet facility, you will have to fill in the form in person in the regional tax office of the FBR.
The FBR personnel will take your information, including biometrics and hand over the printout to you.
That printout will be your business license.
4. Application of Persons Appearing on ATL
If your name appears in the active taxpayers’ list (ATL), you have to do nothing.
The system will automatically generate a business license for you and will send you via email.
5. Proper Display of the License
You will have to display the business license at your business premises and at any other place where you conduct your business.
Does that mean a street vendor will display it too?
Yes, he may attach it to the cart, or they will make a badge like ID to display I guess.
6. No Tax Liability
The business license will be issued free of cost, and you won’t be liable to pay any tax just because of holding a license.
You will pay tax only if you have a taxable income as per income tax ordinance 2001.
That’s true, but here is the catch.
Once registered with your name, business, and CNIC, you will have no choice but to become a filer even if you don’t have a taxable income.
The guys in FBR are playing smart this time.
I hope they do so in good faith.
Here is the screenshot of the draft application form.
Isn’t it simple?
FBR proposes a new method for the registration of all kind of businesses. Subject to cabinet approval, the process will require you to fill in a simple online form, and the license will be emailed to you.
You will get it in person at FBR’s office if you don’t have a mobile phone.
The issuance of a license will be free of charge, and no tax liability will arise on account of holding a license.
Though simple in nature, the licensing scheme is an alternative way to encourage people to file their tax statements.
What’s your opinion about the proposed plan for a business license? Are you ready to register?