Monday, April 29, 2013

ZRA to launch Tax Online
By Edwin Mbulo in Mapatizya
Fri 26 Apr. 2013, 14:00 CAT

ZAMBIA Revenue Authority assistant director in the large taxpayers' department Debora Shampande Bwembya on Wednesday took time to explain payment of mineral royalties among amethyst miners in Mapatizya.

And ZRA domestic taxes project change manager Chisanga Kashoki says a new system known as Tax Online will be launched by ZRA in July to make it easy for people to pay taxes.

Addressing the business community and amethyst miners at the Mapatizya Mining Processing Centre in Kalomo yesterday, Bwembya said ZRA realised the need to get value out of Mapatizya through amethyst mining.

"Mineral royalty is paid whether you have sold or not; the moment you mine, mineral royalty tax is payable and it is based on realisable values. As you mine, you pay royalty tax, if you look at the form it does not talk of how much you have sold, it just talks of the values.

A mineral royalty tax is actually considered as a credit in your final returns. When you do your final returns you are going to knock out that tax against the final tax that you pay, it is like an advance tax," Bwembya said.

She told Mapatizya miners that ZRA was not an enemy and wanted to be reasonable with miners and the business community.

"If we are going to get value for tax, then there is need for capacity building. We as ZRA realise that you need care so that we can get the money we want," she said.

Bwembya added that if miners hid information on what was being generated, Zambia would remain poor.

"In Zambia, we say that we have minerals, but we say that we are not seeing the results. The government now wants to know how much is being generated from the mines, that is why we have taken this trouble to be here with you," she said.

And Kashoki said ZRA knew that it was not easy for Zambians, especially those in remote areas such as Mapatizya to pay tax, hence the introduction of the online system.

"ZRA has bought a new tax system which allows people to pay online from where they are called tax online. The small taxpayers will also be able to pay taxes on mobile phones. We want to make it easy so that you don't have to travel to Livingstone, and this will be launched in July," Kashoki said.

She said the tax pin identification numbers (TPIN) will be reduced to ten digits instead of 13 and would require a lot of training even within the ZRA.

And Pauline Mundia, an amethyst dealer, urged other miners to be registered with the ZRA as it was now becoming difficult for people to trade with miners who did not have tax clearance.

"The government will see the need to develop this area if we pay mineral royalties, look at our school it is in poor state," said Mundia.

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