Another amnesty scheme on the cards

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The government is considering offering another amnesty scheme to the people who have stashed their money abroad in offshore companies as well as in the real estate ventures.

A source privy to this development says that questioning by United Arab Emirates (UAE) authorities, under pressure from OECD countries, about the tax details from expatriates who have a net worth of $1 million or more in UAE banks, has created ripples among many rich Pakistanis.

Many Pakistanis have stashed their wealth in UAE. The notices by UAE authorities, which are being termed as a precursor to strict measures in near future, have caused a concern among the influential. They had asked the government to announce some amnesty scheme to bring back their wealth, the source added.

The government has sought proposals from the Securities and Exchange Commission, Federal Board of Revenue, State Bank of Pakistan and Board of Investment to develop some amnesty scheme at the earliest.

The scheme could be announced next month, the source said, adding that the government urgently wants foreign inflows to decrease the pressure on foreign exchange reserves as well as to revive investment atmosphere in the country.

The government already is working on an incentive package for the local manufacturing sector to revive the economic growth. The manufacturing sector is likely to be given same incentives as would be offered to new projects under CPEC.