TRA: Why electronic tax stamps is way to go

Thursday October 21 2021
TAX PIC

TRA Commissioner General Alphayo Kidata

By Mgongo Kaitira
By Alex Nelson Malanga

Mwanza/Dar. Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA) said on Wednesday that the Electronic Tax Stamps (ETS) offered mutual benefits to the government and companies, urging Lake Zone manufacturers to adopt the system.

TRA Commissioner General Alphayo Kidata said during his tour of the Mwanza plant for Serengeti Breweries Limited (SBL) on Wednesday that apart from enabling manufacturers to know their production volume, the system also sends real time production data to the government.

“This in turn, gives us a chance to ascertain the amount of tax revenue to be collected from manufacturers,” said Mr Kidata.

This happens because the ETS enables both the taxman and the manufacturer to monitor production volumes and thus it prevents mis-declarations and under-declarations.

The ETS offers a viable means of leveling the playing field for manufacturers, thanks to their capacity of tracking and tracing manufactured products.

This is because the tracking and tracing system – embedded in the ETS – enable the taxman, the manufacturer and the consumer to easily and effectively tell whether the stamp fixed on a product is original or fake.

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That way, TRA is able to protect genuine manufacturers and the economy as a whole against illegal importer and illegal producers.

It also enables authorities to check the entry of counterfeits in the market while at the same time, providing manufacturers with the tools they need to conduct data analysis of their businesses.

In his remarks, SBL’s Financial Manager Matiko Waryana commended TRA for the initiative which he said, had helped them increase efficiency in calculating the beverages produced and tax to be paid.

"This system has relieved us of the inconvenience of calculating the amount of beer we produce and the amount of tax we have to pay. It has helped us even in paying our taxes on time," said Mr Maryana 

The government announced plans to adopt the ETS system in June 2018 and the first phase of the project was conducted on January 15, 2019 whereby stamps were installed on companies that produce beer, wine and spirits.

Phase two of the project was rolled out on August 1, 2019 when ETS’ were stamped on sweetened flavored water and other non-alcoholic beverages, like energy and malt drinks and soda.

The third phase, which involved enrolling electronic stamps on fruit juices (including grape must), vegetable juices (under Heading 20.09), and bottled drinking water, was conducted November 1, 2020.