NANCY MWAPE, Lusaka
ZAMBIA Revenue Authority (ZRA) has this year collected K1.9 billion withholding value added tax (VAT) as a result of combined effort from 32 agents.
Withholding VAT is tax that is withheld at source on payments made to suppliers of taxable goods and services and taxpayers can reclaim it after thorough verification of documents.
Speaking at an e-payment breakfast meeting yesterday, ZRA commissioner of modernisation and strategy Dingani Banda said the authority has strived to improve its business process from inception through various programmes that have seen it getting better in service provision.
“Various measures are being considered to improve tax collection while others have been implemented. One measure to improve collection of VAT has been the introduction of withholding VAT by agents appointed by ZRA,” he said.
Mr Banda said the authority is currently working with 16 banks and one mobile service provider offering e-payments solutions to various tax payments which has made it convenient for taxpayers to be more efficient in their operations.
“We also do recognise challenges faced by taxpayers when it comes to compliance, such as delayed receipting, mis-posting of payments to wrong tax types, creation of reconciliation hurdles for the taxpayer, mis-keying of information resulting in errors such as the receipting of wrong amounts,” he said.
Speaking at the same event, ZRA director of finance Timothy Milambo said the authority is proposing that banks provide a link on their e-payment platform for all third party payments such as VAT withholding agents, law firms and agents of withholding rent.
Mr Milambo said if the proposal is implemented, it will reduce on errors and processing time, and improve the business relationship between all the stakeholders involved.
“Banks are encouraged to be ahead of the game and avail a link of the e-payment platform to all agents that make third- party payments to ZRA. Target date is end of July 2017 to have the “walk-in” window available to clients,” he said.