SUPRO has organized a Press Conference on the eve of National Budget declaration for the financial year 2017-18 aims to Demand increasing budget to ensure Tax Justice, health, education and social protection for sustainable development on May 16, 2017 at Dhaka Reporters Unity Auditorium. The press conference was chaired by SUPRO’s Chairperson S.M. Harun Or Rashid Lal. The moderator of the press conference was M A Quader, General Secretary, SUPRO. Vice Chairperson of SUPRO Manju Rani Pramanik was read the key note paper of the press conference.
In the press conference, the speakers said, it is no doubt a laudable initiative taken by the government that the upcoming budget will give preference on direct tax collection for the revenue generation rather than indirect tax. But to achieve this target tax administration has to be more efficient and competent so that there will be less dependency on indirect tax instead of direct tax. To implement the new VAT effectively it needs anintegrated coordination between business people’s tax officials specially NBR. If the VAT law won’t implement properly the negative impact will be disastrous for the general consumers.
On the other side speakers opined that every subsequent year since 2013-14 the provision of Black Money Whitening has been carrying by the government. In this regard, SUPRO think, the process actually encouraging the corrupt practices at all level which has providing bad affect in the economy. To prevent corruption and establishing rule of law in the country it’s a major barrier. We are vehemently opposing to keep up the provision of Black Money Whitening. SUPRO expecting the choice has to be discarded for the sake of corruption prevention and good governance.
Regarding the budget implementation process speakers emphasized that to implement the budget within timeframe is a key challenge. The trend of deficit implements has been increasing day by day. In the financial year 2011-12 the implementation rate of the budget was 93%. Gradually it has been declining year after year and the implementation budget was 78% in the financial year 2015-16. It’s the real challenge. We won’t get full-fledged fruit without hundred per cent implementation of the budget. It will hinder the implementation target of 7th Five Year Plan of Bangladesh as well as SDGs. So mere increasing the allocation of budget is not enough, it has to be ensured effective and quality implementation of budget using people’s tax payer’s money.
Print and Electronic media journalists, members of the civil society and SUPRO secretariat staffs were took part at the press conference.
The key recommendations of the press conference are:
• Promoting tax justice it has to be ensured pro poor and developed services
• Have to formulate pro-poor national policy
• Have to stopped black money whitening provision
• The budget has to be participatory because budget revenue comes from tax payer’s money, it needs structural reform and participatory district budget has to be announced.
• Ensure 6% allocation in the education budget for achieving sustainable development goal
• Education budget has to be separated from defense, science & technology and religious education
• Allocated regional demand centric in the budget and ensure special allocation for the less privileged and marginalized section of the people’s
• In the health budget at least 3% of total GDP has to be increased and ensure transparency and accountability in the utilization of the budgetary money.
• Stopped the commercialization process in the education and health sector
• Need demand centric budget in the agricultural sector for sustainable development
• Ensure effective allocation of budget in the social safety net programs in line life cycle process.