TANZANIA Revenue Authority (TRA) has dedicated every July annually as the month to thank taxpayers, who routinely fulfill their obligations without being pushed.
Speaking at the ongoing 44th Dar es Salaam International Trade Fair (DITF), TRA Director for Taxpayer Services and education, Richard Kayombo said the authority wishes to thank all taxpayers for their response.
“Y ou have faithfully fulfilled your obligation, and so we have witnessed strategic projects flourishing in various parts of the country as well as other megaprojects. TRA would like to thank every taxpayer of the country very heartily,” he noted.
Mr Kayombo said many people have been educated on the importance of voluntarily paying taxes, which in turn have triggered various development projects to start and become implemented, adding: “the money is used to pay staff as salaries, government debt and develop new projects,” explaining, he added that several projects have been completed with taxpayers’ money, which include the construction of 348 health Centres and 71 District hospitals as well as the implementation of fee free education countrywide.
“The person behind all this development is a taxpayer because without him/ her none of these projects would have been realized… the government alone can not accomplish them,” Mr Kayombo pointed out.
Apart from taxpayers, he expressed gratitude to the various stakeholders, who have helped in one way or another to manage the tax issues.
Mr Kayombo said President John Magufuli has been at the forefront of the tax collection education, when it comes to encouraging people to comply and demand receipts and buying any commodity.
Others are various government officials at all levels, who have been supporting the taxman by raising awareness on the importance of revenue collection.
However, he also thanked Regional and Districts Commissioners for their role to ensure that revenue collections become an important agenda in their public addresses.
He said TRA District and Regional Managers have become part of the defence and security committees to make sure they provide a report on where they are stuck in collecting taxes so that they can be helped.
During the leadership of the fifth phase government, domestic revenue collections increased to 18.5tril/- in 2018/19 from 11.0tril/- in 2014/15, estimated as 69.1 per cent rise.
On monthly basis, taxes collected increased from an average of 825bn/- in 2014/15 to an average of 1.3 tril/- in 2018/19, and further to average of 1.5tril/- between July 2019 to April 2020.
On non-tax revenue, the increase was from 688.7bn/- in 2014/15 to 2.4tril/- in 2018/19, before jumping to 2.25tril/- in the first 10 months in 2019/20.
The increase in revenue was due to efforts made by the fifth phase government that has sealed revenue leakages by strengthening enforcement of laws and use of Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) systems in revenue collection.