Dar es Salaam. The director of Tanzania Revenue Authority’s (TRA) Taxpayer Services and Education, Mr Richard Kayombo, has told a business delegation from Sweden that Tanzania tax laws encourages people from local and foreign countries to invest.
The delegation, accompanied by Tanzania’s ambassador to Sweden, Dr Wilibrod Slaa, was briefed on how the authority operates.
Mr Kayombo explained further that the country has put down some tax incentives to try and woo investors, these include having the Common External Tariffs, which applies to all imported goods into the region with three rates of 0 per cent, 10 per cent and 25 per cent depending on the type of goods; harmonised East African Community tariffs of zero rate for imports of raw materials, capital goods, replacement parts, inputs for agriculture, animal husbandry, fishing, livestock and pharmaceuticals medicaments.
He added: "Other incentives under corporate tax include a reduced rate from normal 30 per cent to 25 per cent charged for three years to newly listed companies with the Dar es Salaam Stock Exchange (DSE), 20 per cent for a new entity dealing in manufacturing of pharmaceuticals and leather products and 10 per cent rate for corporations investing in a plant for assembling motor vehicles, tractors and fishing auto boats”.
Under the Value Added Tax (VAT), Mr Kayombo pointed out some incentives including zero rate for all exports, exemptions of various items as provided in the respective tax laws that include exemption of imported machinery by local manufacturers and processors of vegetable oil, textiles, pharmaceuticals, hides and skins and leather manufactured in Tanzania Mainland.
On the other hand, he assured the Swedish delegates that, as a way fighting corruption, TRA has a fully-fledged department responsible for staff ethics and integrity.
"The department conducts both proactive and reactive anti-corruption functions to ensure that TRA staff do not engage in corruption practices that not only deny government its due revenue but damages trust and relationship between the revenue administration and taxpayers,” he said.
Mr Kayombo further gave assurance to the investors on the availability of redress mechanisms on tax issues that should give taxpayers comfort whenever they have disputes on tax matters. The mechanism starts with the regional managers across the country, then to the respective commissioners and finally to the Commissioner General.
He went on to elaborate that “should a taxpayer remain unsatisfied with the internal redress mechanism, he is free to escalate the matter by appealing to the Tax Appeal Board and then to the Tax Appeals Tribunal which all ensure and guarantee good Governance and transparency”, he added.
For his part, Dr Slaa called for investors from his country to invest in the country as it seeks to build an industrial-based economy.
For his part, Mr Anders Sjoberg, who is the Swedish ambassador to Tanzania urged his fellow countrymen to invest in the country.