The revenue board has identified irregularities in using VAT registration number for export-import and other business activities.
The National Board of Revenue (NBR) has found that the old invalid Business Identification Numbers (BINs) were being used in the business activities, officials said.
The VAT wing of the NBR also found that the field-level VAT offices were also accepting the VAT returns manually and with the old invalid BINs.
VAT officials said that there is a risk of VAT evasion as invalid BINs are not incorporated in the new automated system. Following detection of the irregularities, the VAT Monitoring, Statistics and Coordination wing sent a letter on Wednesday to all the field-level VAT offices across the country, asking the field offices to give details of the steps taken by them to ensure the use of 13-digit new BINs.
The field offices will have to furnish the details within next 15 days on providing the 13-digit BIN to the businesses who are operating with nine-digit or 11-digit old ones.
The NBR has introduced the new BIN as per the VAT and Supplementary Duty Act-2012 and declared old BINs invalid. It is interlinked with the VAT online system and Asycuda World system of customs.
"It is illegal to conduct import-export and other business activities using the nine-digit or 11-digit BINs," said the letter. Through different sources, the NBR came to know that many traders are yet to obtain the 13-digit BINs and using old BINs for business activities, it said.
They are submitting the VAT returns manually with the old BINs which the field-level VAT officials were also accepting, it added.
Earlier, the businesses that had 11-digit BINs replaced it with nine-digit BINs first, followed by 13-digit ones as per the NBR order.
All the VAT-registered businesses had been asked to update their BIN to 13-digit by November 30, 2019.
VAT officials said that it is difficult to track economic activities of the businesses that are using old BINs as it is not incorporated in the automated VAT system.