The Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) has started undertaking comprehensive compliance reviews of all tax returns and customs declarations submitted in 2015, 2016 and 2017.
This follows the expiry of the last time-to-pay agreements under the amnesty on 30th June, 2018.
From 24 April to 31 December, 2017, the Zambia Revenue Authority ran a tax amnesty on interest and penalties arising from late or non-submission of returns and late or non-payment of tax liabilities on all domestic tax liabilities.
The Tax Amnesty exercise was intended to give an opportunity to taxpayers to declare all transactions that had not been reported and to resolve their tax indebtedness arising from interest and penalties. The Amnesty also offered taxpayers longer time-to-pay agreements until 30th June 2018.
ZRA Commissioner General Kingsley Chanda says the objective of this exercise is to ensure that taxpayers’ declarations on the ZRA database are consistent across all tax types.
Mr. Chanda says this is being done by means of cross-matching Domestic Tax data on Tax Online and customs data on ASYCUDA World using a revolutionary approach.
He says results so far indicate that many taxpayers continue to be evasive when reporting to Customs and to Domestic Tax on comparable transactions.
Mr. Chanda discloses that taxpayers whose declarations will be flagged by the data matching system that they will receive a notification requesting them to provide an explanation for the identified variations within 14 days of the notification.
He is reminding taxpayers that they are required by law to comply with this request and to provide any requested information and records.
He clarifies that should a taxpayer fail to oblige with this request for information and records, ZRA will proceed to amend the taxpayer’s tax assessments by making adjustments that may be deemed fit in accordance with the relevant provisions of the Income Tax Act, the Value Added Tax Act and the Customs and Excise Act.
He cautions that failure to provide the information and records as requested, may result in incurring of fines or penalties in accordance with the aforementioned legislations.
The ZRA Commissioner General has since encouraged taxpayers to comply voluntarily on their tax obligations.
Mr. Chanda states that taxpayers who choose to evade taxes will be identified and brought to account.