By Melusi Manabe
The Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA) through a Moratorium (suspension arrangement) under the Taxation Bill of 2017 is offering a temporary reprieve for Small and Media Enterprises on the remittance of Value Added Tax (VAT) they owe from inception of their Businesses.
The noble idea, which will see SMEs owners avoiding penalties which are up to 200% of what is owed, will go a long way in boosting their revenue base at the same time adding authenticity to their business endeavours.
ZIMRA liason officer from the Client Services, Bothwell Guto said, “The initiative which started from the 1st of January and lasts to 30 June 2017, was a partnership between the Ministry of Small and Medium Enterprises and The Ministry of Finance to encourage small businesses to register their companies for VAT”. Guto was addressing entrepreneurs at the on-going regional TechFest.
SMEs that have an annual revenue of US$60 000 to US$240 000 are the ones eligible to register for VAT.
Guto further explained that SMEs should take advantage of this initiative because it means that ZIMRA would for the 6 months uplift all penalties for SMEs who were illegally not submitting VAT owed.
Asked on whether there were stiffer penalties for non-remittance, Brighton Hleruka, another liason officer, said that they did not necessarily like taking other routes such as attaching property as it was not good for business.
“However we do encourage businesses to approach our liaison officers for payment plans when they feel they cannot submit their VAT in time”, Hleruka added.
In a revelation that made perfect sense in the cash stripped Zimbabwe economy Hleruka added that ZIMRA does not deal in cash but uses RTGs, money transfers and other cashless transactions .