By Charles Katabalwa/Umoja Standard.
Kampala, Uganda: In his closing remarks for the 50th East African Authorities Commissioner Generals meeting held in Kampala under the Theme: “Leveraging Technology and data for Revenue Mobilization”, John Rujoki Musinguzi the Commissioner General Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) said that the ever changing and dynamic business environment in which tax administrations operate calls for increased reliance on technology and data analytics by offering a wide range of service to reduce cost of compliance, marking target intervations and increase overall operational efficiency, so digital Service Tax is the way to go.
“EAC governments lost a lot of revenue through digital business platforms like Amazon yet the proprietors of those business get revenue direct from countries where their customers base so will be history when digital service tax is implemented due to fact that the world is no digital” adds Musinguzi
He disclosed that “In Kenya the law is existing and commissioner general from Kenya Mr. Githii Mburu during the two days meeting has taught other commissioners on how it works so it will be easier for them to implement if their respective government allows to make the DST law”.
On the same meeting over 14 resolutions were agreed on to help EAC collect more tax among which include
1.To exploit the possibility of using drone technology to curb smuggling
2.To harmonize the data governance policies and share approved data governance template and individual RA data governance policies upon request.
3. Tax administrations to develop sustainable cost-effective innovation that facilitate taxpayers’ compliance in a user-friendly manner.
4.To embrace SMART Gates technology in tandem with existing Regional Electronic Cargo Trucking system to facilitate trade.
5.EARATC to review and come up with legal framework and develop modalities on how Tax administrations can collaborate in enforcement of tax arrears by companies which have subsidiaries within the region.
6.To have a direct link between the EARACG forum and the EAC and thus resolved to further push forward the request for the establishment of a sectorial committee on Tax Affairs at the EAC.
7.To analyse economic sector performance mainly, focusing tax contribution of agriculture which the major economic activity in the region.
8.To reduce cost of acquiring and maintenance of ICT system by considering developing internally a harmonised domestic tax system, To that effect, CT experts in Revenue administrations will develop in one month, terms of reference that will guide on the way forward.
9.undertake a comparative study of the ICT support system (administrative and client relations) of the different Revenue Administrations.
10.To review tax composition of collection and identify benchmark for monitoring against performance and others.
“The next meeting will be in Republic of Tanzania between 24th- 25th August 2023” Musinguzi disclosed.
The meeting was meeting was attended by commissioners General and senior officers from office Burudiais des Recettets (OBR) ,Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA), Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) , Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA)South Sudan National Revenue Authority, Uganda Revenue Authority (URA)and Zanzibar Revenue Authority, others in attendance were the Representative from East African community (EAC) Secretariat, permanent Secretary and Secretary to Treasury, Ministry of Finance planning and economic Development of Uganda.