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Malawi Revenue Authority collects K1.3 billion more

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Revenue collection body, the Malawi Revenue Authority, has collected over K1.3 billion above its target in the first three months of the year, thanks to the introduction of the Block Management System (BMS).

Using the system, MRA is collecting taxes by assigning an officer to a certain area that should be responsible for conducting services on its behalf.

Speaking after launching the system in Mzuzu, MRA Commissioner General John Bizwick said, apart from collecting additional revenue, MRA has also registered an increase in the number of taxpayers.

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Bizwick said the anticipation is to have more people becoming tax compliant.

“What we are trying to do is to bring the tax man nearer the taxpayer so that we are able to provide better services. So, we will divide the cities into blocks and those blocks will have special MRA officers and we will be visiting each taxpayer door to door,” he said.

Of late, there have been inconsistences on introduction of taxes where in one fiscal year a tax regime would be introduced, only to be removed the other year.

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A case in point is the 16.5 Value Added Tax (Vat) which was introduced on refined cooking oil in 2020 but has been scraped off this year.

While noting the inconsistences, Bizwick said, under the Domestic Resource Mobilisation strategy which was launched last year, there will be certainty on taxes.

“We do some research; as you are aware, the government launched the domestic resource mobilisation last year. In that strategy it is coming out clear that, at times, the government does not come out clear on taxes it wants to introduce. So what we are trying to do under the domestic resource mobilisation is to bring in certainty on the taxes that would be introduced every year,” he said.

Commenting on the development, Deputy Mayor for Mzuzu City Tony Mwenitete said the new system would help the council track residents who were not paying taxes.

“The system will help us identify tax non-compliant residents because they (MRA) have the machinery to identify those people and in the long run this would help us increase revenue collection,” he said

Wickly Mhango, who represented the business community, said the more money the government collects the more the number of taxes would be reduced.

Mzuzu has been split into two blocks; Luwinga and city centre.

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