Realtors have urged the government to allow investors to commit their undisclosed money to the housing sector for next 10 years without raising any question over their source of income.
“If undeclared money is allowed for investment without any question, the investors can be brought under the tax net in future,” said Liakat Ali Bhuiyan, acting President of Real Estate and Housing Association of Bangladesh (REHAB).
Undisclosed money stands for the money, wealth or property that individuals and organisations have not included in their tax returns.
Economists, however, termed it ‘Black Money’ that refers to money or wealth accumulated through unlawful or criminal activities.
Liakat was reading out a 12-point demand of the organisation including legalising undisclosed money at a press conference marking the upcoming budget held at CIRDAP auditorium in the city on Saturday.
“Money is being illegally flown to other countries using legal channels like second home scheme of many countries.”
The sector received the opportunity of legalising undisclosed asset, but the facility remains mostly unutilised because of not having indemnity, he said.
The REHAB leader requested the government to amend the existing provisions of income tax ordinance 1984 to provide the investors with legal indemnity for benefiting the real estate sector.
He said the investors cannot enjoy the current offers because of the present section and called for steps to make the law “time-befitting.”
According to the law, the untaxed money holders can legalise their money through construction or purchase of residential buildings or apartments by paying tax at varying rates in different cities and areas in the country up to Tk7,000 a square metre starting from Tk600, but the money should be derived from legitimate sources.
The other demands of realtors include reduced tax and registration fees for flats and plots at 7% from existing 14% to help the real estate sector, launching of refinancing scheme at a single-digit interest rate by Bangladesh Bank and formation of Tk20,000 crore fund in this regard, fixing value-added tax (VAT) for rod at 1.5%.
The press briefing was, among others, attended by REHAB press and media wing co-chairman Kamal Mahmud, REHAB Director Md Zahir Ahmed and Naimul Hasan.
The real estate sector demanded bringing amendment to the 19(B) section of Income Tax Ordinance 1984. Real estate sector demanded the government to allow undisclosed money be invested on buying apartments and plots.
They made the demand at a pre-budget discussion in Dhaka on Monday. National Board of Revenue organised the meeting attended by representatives from housing, small and medium enterprises and construction sectors.
NBR Chairman Md Nojibur Rahman presided over the meeting. Federation of Bangladesh Chambers of Commerce and Industry Advisor Manzur Ahmed was present as special guest. Recently the real estate sector demanded bringing amendment to the 19(B) section of Income Tax Ordinance 1984.
They said the investors cannot enjoy the current offers because of the present section and urged to make the law “time-befitting.”
According to the law, the untaxed money holders can legalise the money through construction or purchase of residential buildings or apartments by paying tax at varying rates of different cities and areas in the country up to Tk7,000 a square metre starting from Tk600.
But the money should be derived from legitimate sources, the law says.