ZIMRA wants stiffer penalties for tax evaders

Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) chairperson, Willia Bonyongwe
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HARARE,– Zimbabwe’s tax agency says it is lobbying for new legislation which will see tax evaders being handed stiffer penalties, as the country which solely relies on tax to fund its operations tries to shore up revenue collections.

Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) chairperson, Willia Bonyongwe told journalists on Tuesday that the current penalties were not deterrent enough.

“We believe that we are not doing the country a service, our penalties are very low … people are finding it actually lucrative to continue evading tax, it’s not a deterrent at all, so we want penalties which deter people from not paying tax ,” said Bonyongwe.

In the first half of the year gross collections stood at $1,789 billion some 8 percent above the target of $1,656 billion. For 2017 Zimbabwe is targeting revenue inflows of $3,7 billion but ZIMRA says with increased levels of compliance revenues have the potential to reach $6 billion annually.

The bulk of Zimbabwe’s revenue collections comes from Individual tax followed by Excise duty. Corporates are the highest defaulters accounting for a huge chunk of the $3,12 billion tax debt as at June. – Source