PML-N lawmakers critical of economic situation, inflation, dollar value.

ISLAMABAD -- Lawmakers from ruling PML-N have raised their concerns over the current economic situation of the country especially continuous increase in inflation rate and higher dollar value. National Assembly Standing Committee on Finance and Revenue has expressed serious concerns over the increase in inflation rate and dollar value and summoned Finance Minister to Ishaq Dar in next meeting. The committee met under the chairmanship of Qasier Ahmed Sheikh. MNAs from ruling PML-N have raised their concerns over the continuous increase in inflation rate and higher dollar value. Barjees Tahir, PMLN MNA, said that prices of petrol, electricity and gas are going to further increase on the direction of the International Monetary Fund (IMF). He further said that inflation rate had already surged to 30 percent. He asked when the government will control the inflation rate to give relief to the masses. Meanwhile, committee chairman Qaiser Ahmed Sheikh said that inflation and dollar value were out of control.

He asked which reforms had been introduced by the incumbent government in last seven months. He said that the incumbent government was continuously borrowing, which was not solution of the economic crisis. Chairman Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) Asim Ahmed informed the parliamentary committee that tax collection would be reduced in the coming months due to reduction in imports and currency appreciation. He further said that the IMF is also asking for additional revenue generation measures to offset the tax collection shortfall. He informed that the FBR had collected Rs2149 billion in first four months (July to October) of the current fiscal year as against the target of Rs2144 billion. The FBR had achieved the income tax collection target but missed the targets of sales tax and custom duty in four months. However, the government might face tax collection shortfall in the months to come as imports are projected to decline. He further said that the FBR has to collect Rs5321 billion in remaining eight months (November to June) of the current fiscal year. However, it is unlikely to achieve the target. Other reasons behind reduction in tax collection are increase in interest...

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