Dr Ashatu Kijaji, the Deputy Minister for Finance and Planning issued the directivein Dar es Salaam early this week during an inspection visit at the TRA Temeke regional tax offices, to hear from TRA staff the challenges they face in collecting taxes.
She said that the government expects that a complete tax collection profile of the city of Dar es Salaam shall have been completed by the end of the year.
Though TRA did well in tax collection for the past month whereby 1.8trn/- was collected, the amount is still small keeping in mind current awareness among the people on paying taxes, she declared.
She reiterated the requirement on TRA to submit data on the increase of taxpayers following the distribution of Identity Cards (IDs) for small traders.
She said earlier that President John Magufuli’s aim on the IDs was to widen the tax base to include small traders still raising their business capital.
On the tax on buildings, Dr Kijaji called on TRA to ensure it gets a list of eligible buildings countrywide along with their owners in order to prepare the database to simplify property tax collection.
“In order to increase revenue from property tax the TRA must do the work day and night to ensure the database is completed. It will be used to remind taxpayers thereof through SMS messages on their obligation to pay – just as it is for land rent payers,” she elaborated.
She also directed TRA to inspect users of Electronic Fiscal Devices (EFDs) in Temeke tax region to ensure all sellers issue EFD receipts and all buyers demand to be given one, as only by doing so will revenue collection increase.
Earlier, welcoming the deputy minister, the manager for the TRA tax region Paul Walalaze said the region currently has 437,539 taxpayers and for the past financial year the region targeted to collect 395b/- but the collection totaled 328.5bn/-, around 85 percent of the target.
“During the same period we also collected property tax of 1.4bn/- compared to the targeted 1.6bn/- and tax on billboards 2.2bn/- from the 2.3bn/- target, representing 87 per cent and 95 per cent of the set targets respectively,” said Walalaze.
A senior TRA official, Hamisi Lupenja assured the deputy minister that TRA will implement the directives to the letter so as to improve tax collection, along with educating taxpayers.