MRA optimistic to hit tax target in 2021/2022 fiscal year

"We are aware that there are so many taxpayers that are not complying because, either they don't the law or they are afraid of being part of the tax system."

The Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) has revealed that; with the shortness of the 2021/2022 fiscal year, which will end next March, it is going an extra mile to hit the tax collecting target for the development of the country.

Speaking on Tuesday during a day-long media training on new tax measures, which the tax collecting body organized in Mzuzu, Head of Corporate Affairs at the institution, Steve Kapoloma, said MRA has brought onboard new strategies which will enable the institution to reach out to more taxpayers easily.

Kapoloma stressed that the new tax measures include: block management system, in which taxpayers from a particular geographical area will be grouped together as one block; the use of tax stamps on foreign products such as beer and cigarettes, and msonkho online; among others measures, will enhance tax compliance, widen the tax net and to boost businesses at the same time.

"It's indeed true that the financial year for 2021/2022 is a unique one because it has a nine-month calendar, but the Malawi Revenue Authority is optimistic that come to the end of March, we should be able to meet the target. We are optimistic because we have put various strategies to achieve the target. The first one is the block management system. This is the system where we are registering all taxpayers that are doing their trade within blocks that are geographically demarcated. And in the block, we intend to educate the taxpayers and assist them so that they comply.

"We are aware that there are so many taxpayers that are not complying because, either they don't the law or they are afraid of being part of the tax system. So, through the block management system, we will engage them, educate them and bring them into the tax net," Kapoloma explained.

In his remarks, President for Nyika Media Club (NMC) a grouping of journalists in the northern region, Joseph Mwale, commended MRA for organizing the training, saying such an initiative will equip media practitioners with robust journalese.

Mwale said: "First of all, let me thank the Malawi Revenue Authority for coming up with us as Nyika Media Club to orient journalists on the new tax measures that have been introduced. The essence is actually that the people are aware of their obligations and that they are able to pay the taxes. So, as people who disseminate information, it is very important that we first understand the tax measures that have been introduced.

"So, if we understand them, then we will be able to tell the public better through various platforms that we use; whether it's newspaper stories, radio programs, or TVs. And that essentially will mean that more Malawians will know what tax measures are there, the kind of taxes that they are supposed to pay, and the procedures that they can follow to ensure that taxes are paid. So, it's very important and we are very grateful."

Each year, Malawi Revenue Authority has a target of taxes to collect, but at times the target is missed due to tax invasion and smuggling of goods in or out of the country by taxpayers.