ISLAMABAD - Chairman Federal Board of Revenue (FBR) Ahmad Waqar has called for concerted efforts coupled with innovative steps to broaden the tax base and increase revenue collection. "It is important that the measures we take to broaden the tax base should be proactive and not reactionary in nature and such measures should be part of an inbuilt mechanism relying on solid data. He said this while speaking to senior tax officials here on Monday in the 2nd Director Generals' Conference to review and improve the pace of revenue collection for the second quarter of the current fiscal year. The conference was attended by all director generals of the three Large Taxpayers Units (LTUs) and 13 Regional Tax Offices (RTOs) located across the country. Member Direct Taxes Irfan Nadeem, Director General Internal Audit Iqbal Muzaffar and other key officials also attended the conference which reviewed various organizational matters, including those concerning submission of tax returns, payment of taxes and tax facilitation. Ahmad Waqar said the meeting of director generals and senior officials once in a quarter was a good exercise but it could be more productive and result oriented if the discussions and deliberations were focused and a due care was taken by all to follow up faithfully on the decisions taken in previous meetings. He exhorted tax officials, especially those managing LTUs in big cities like Karachi and Lahore, to show more dedication in enhancing the pace of revenue collection. He said the officials were also required to improve their image for them to be seen as facilitators and friends of taxpayers besides helping improve the image of the organisation. He also urged officials to provide taxpayers with maximum help and support, especially in matters pertaining to claim of genuine refunds which should be granted without any delay. However, Waqar cautioned the officials against unscrupulous elements who took an undue advantage of the facilitation provided to them to run away with fake and bogus refunds. He observed that cases involving delay in refunds claims on payment of sales tax had surfaced in considerably in recent times but such cases could be disposed of easily by tax officials by cross checking payment of income tax, if due, by such taxpayers. "If followed, such an attitude and approach can strengthen the tax integration process which is a major theme of the tax reforms," he added. The chairman also drew the attention of the officials to the overall micro and macro economic situation with a view for them to studying the nature and scope of impact it could have on the overall revenue generation and tax collection. "Studying the impact of the changing economic scenario on the tax collection should be an ongoing activity for the tax officials to keep themselves abreast of the economic currents and cross current having a direct bearing on the revenue collection," he said. Earlier the meeting decided not to extend under any circumstances the last date for the filing of income tax returns and discourage the trend as observed in certain RTOs of extending the time for submission of returns on the due date beyond the office hours. The meeting also decided to strengthen the practice of internal tax surveys to broaden the tax base. It further decided to widely publicize the investment tax scheme to increase its acceptance among the public.