The Metropolitan Chamber of Commerce and Industry (MCCI) has urged the National Board of Revenue (NBR) to reduce the maximum tax rate for individuals to 25% from the existing 30% in the budget for the upcoming fiscal year.
The trade body has also proposed to raise the tax-free income ceiling for individual taxpayers to Tk450,000 from the existing Tk250,000, and to Tk550,000 from the existing Tk300,000 for women, senior citizens 65 and older, individuals with disabilities and freedom fighters.
MCCI Vice-President Golam Mainuddin placed the proposals at a pre-budget discussion held at the NBR headquarters in Dhaka on Sunday.
Other propositions that the MCCI placed at the meeting include withdrawal of the provision of penalty of an employer for an employee's failure to submit income tax returns, and withdrawal of the requirement to pay 10% of disputed tax before appeal to the commissioner of taxes.
Meanwhile, in a separate pre-budget discussion with the NBR earlier on Sunday, the Bangladesh Women Chamber of Commerce and Industry (BWCCI) and the India-Bangladesh Chamber of Commerce and Industry (IBCCI) placed their own recommendations for the 2018-2019 budget.
The BWCCI proposed to increase the tax-free income ceiling for female individuals to Tk400,000 from the existing Tk300,000 in the upcoming fiscal year.
The trade body also asked for tax holiday – exemption or reduction of taxes – for the first three years female entrepreneur-owned businesses.
BWCCI Senior Vice-President Sangita Ahmed read out the proposals at the meeting, which asked for the continuation of the Tk100 crore allocation for women's development in the upcoming budget.
IBCCI Vice-President Dewan Sultan Ahmed also read out the trade's body's recommendations for the new budget, where he asked the government to reduce the corporate tax rate to 20% from the existing 25%.
He also urged the government to enact the proposed income tax law immediately.
In response to the trade bodies' budget recommendations, NBR Chairman Md Mosharraf Hossain Bhuiyan said: “We will focus on revenue collection in the next fiscal year’s budget, but we will also consider these proposals before finalizing it.”
The NBR chief further said the revenue authorities were working to make the revenue collection process completely automated.
“The installation of ECR (Electronic Cash Register) machines will be complete by this year, which will expedite the revenue realization process,” he added.