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All non-filer consumers to pay tax on their electricity bills

The federal government wants to motivate consumers to become tax-filers by levying withholding tax on electricity bills

A technician from the Karachi Electric Supply Corporation (KESC), Pakistan's largest city's power supply company, fixes new electricity meters at a residential building in Karachi on May 13, 2010. Pakistan's Prime Minister Yousuf Raza Gilani has announced a radical plan to tackle the nation's debilitating energy shortages, including extending the weekend and banning all-night wedding parties. Pakistan is only able to produce about two thirds of its required electricity, officials said, a crisis blamed on soaring demand, debt, a lack of investment, corruption and a creaking distribution system. AFP PHOTO/ RIZWAN TABASSUM (Photo by RIZWAN TABASSUM / AFP)

ISLAMABAD: Non-income tax return filer electricity consumers _ residential, commercial, and industrial will have to pay withholding tax on their electricity bills, starting from July 1, 2021. Non-filer domestic electricity consumers throughout the country will pay 7.5 percent withholding tax on their bill if total amount of bill exceeds 25,000 rupees in a month, starting from July 2021.

However, commercial and industrial non-filers will pay different rates of withholding tax to be included in their bills every month. The FBR and power companies have shared with public the WHT rates for the non-filers. For the residential consumers, the government has targeted those who consume electricity much more than ordinary people.

Therefore, all the power distribution companies in the country have asked their consumers to mention their tax number and CNIC in the bills issued in August 201.

The government and the distribution companies have also urged their consumers to become tax filers as early as possible to avoid imposition of WHT on their bill. However, this advance tax payment is only for those electricity users whose monthly bill will be above the threshold of Rs25,000. If they are regular filers, this tax will not be included in their bills.

According to Federal Board of Revenue, the withholding tax is applicable on individuals who are non-filers on the taxpayers list of the Federal Board of Revenue (FBR). Non-filer residential consumers will be subject to a 7.5% withholding tax if their electricity bill is PKR 25,000 or more for any month in the fiscal year.

Meanwhile, the commercial and industrial consumers with a monthly bill between PKR 500 and PKR 20,000 will be subject to a withholding tax of 10% of the amount. For bills exceeding PKR 20,000, commercial consumers will have to pay 12% of the total amount with an additional fixed charge of PKR 1950, whereas industrial consumers will have to pay 5% of the total amount with the same fixed charges.

Like other distribution companies, in Karachi, K-Electric also urged its residential consumers to visit their nearest KE Customer Care Center in order to update their CNIC on their consumer bills. For further facilitation and queries, customers can also reach out to KE’s 24/7 channels including 118 call center and social media platforms.

Javed Mahmood
Written By

I am an experienced writer, analyst, and author. My exposure in English journalism spans more than 28 years. In the past, I have been working with daily The Muslim (Lahore Bureau), daily Business Recorder (Lahore/Islamabad Bureaus), Daily Times, Islamabad, daily The Nation (Lahore and Karachi). With daily The Nation, I have served as Resident Editor, Karachi. Since 2009, I have been working as a Freelance Writer/Editor for American organizations.

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