Tax education crucial to enhancing revenue—MRA

BIZWICK—The problem is big

Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) has emphasised the need for tax education among Malawians for them to appreciate the need to pay tax.

This, MRA says, would significantly boost tax revenues in the country.

This came out over the weekend during World Customs Day commemorations in Blantyre.


MRA Commissioner General John Bizwick said tax evasion persists due to, among other things, ignorance and some people who find loopholes in the system.

“The more tax evasion we experience, the more it affects our foreign exchange position because the tax evaders rush to buying foreign exchange with the invaded tax money,” Bizwick said.

MRA Board Chairperson Vizenge Kumwenda said even though the authority meets and surpasses targets, the revenue would have been more if it were not for tax evaders.


“We are taking steps to curb the problem, especially focusing on knowledge and information sharing within the country and with neighbouring countries.

“The idea of making the tax-payer know about his responsibility to pay tax helps them know the importance of paying tax and, apart from that, we have a good interface with neighbouring countries on revenue from imported goods,” Kumwenda said.

In an interview, tax expert from EK consultants Emmanuel Kaluluma said there is a need to deal with the root cause and not the symptoms.

He said when people start businesses, they want to maximise profit and not give money to government which has become complicated as the country admits that it has been overtaken by a corrupt way of life.

“This is where tax-payer education comes in to improve level of compliance. It also goes further to illuminate on how the money is used. We have issues of people going to the hospital and not finding medicine, poor education facilities and we are going back to square one; so, it is a combination of things, ignorance corruption, misuse of resources and all sorts of things.

Apart from the commemorations, MRA awarded stakeholders it works with in knowledge sharing and revenue collection.

One of the awardees is Malawi University of Business and Applied Sciences for its service in knowledge provision.

Mubas Executive Dean of School of Science and Technology Professor Mphatso Kamndaya said their role is to design programmes that suit the country’s revenue generation and protection.

“This award will encourage us that, when we are developing a new programme, MRA is our right partner during consultations so that we develop programmes that suit what the country needs,” Kamdaya said.

The 2023 World Customs Day was commemorated under the theme ‘Nurturing the Next Generation: Promoting a Culture of Knowledge Sharing and Professional Pride in Customs’.

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