INTERNATIONAL - Namibia's Finance Minister Calle Schlettwein on Thursday said Namibian taxpayers can get relief from the taxman's noose if they register for the new Integrated Tax Administration System (ITAS), which was introduced in January this year. ]
The minister addressing media at a press brief said the incentive program will be introduced in order to encourage taxpayers not only to register as e-filers but also to continually use the online service.
"Taxpayers are therefore hereby informed that the ministry is offering an incentive in the form of waiving penalties charged on tax accounts. The incentive program covers the period since the launch of ITAS and ending on 30 June 2020," he said.
Schlettwein said that the ministry's aim is to reach a target of 90 percent of the taxpayer population register as e-filers by June 2020.
Furthermore, he said taxpayers who have already registered as e-filers since the launch of ITAS also benefit from this incentive and penalties for those without outstanding returns will be waived automatically.
Schlettwein said that the initiative is meant to see a shift from manual interaction between the Inland Revenue Department and taxpayers to continuous use of the online platform.
"Reaching this target is necessary because the ministry may in future require taxpayers to file all tax returns electronically without an option of manual filing," he concluded.
Namibia's economy is projected to gradually emerge from recession in 2020 with a moderate growth rate of about 0.8 percent and about 1.3 percent by 2021, averaging 2 percent over the next Medium Term Expenditure Framework (MTEF), a government official said.
For this year the economy is estimated to contract by about 1.5 percent relative to the growth rate of 0.2 percent estimated in the Budget, Namibia's Minister of Finance, Calle Schlettwein said in his Mid-Term budget review policy statement for 2019/20 he delivered on Tuesday.