Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) has today unveiled the online auction as part of its technological strategies aimed at streamlining tax administration procedures to enhance service delivery and improve revenue collection.
While announcing the shift on Monday, the taxman says the move follows a successful piloting of the online auction, through which KRA collected Kshs 37.5 million.
“The process will boost government efforts to decongest ports and ensure cargo is cleared in a timely and efficient manner,” KRA Commissioner General, Humphrey Wattanga said
Speaking during the Taxpayers’ Month Launch at Customs House, Mombasa, Wattanga noted that the online auction will give taxpayers the opportunity to appreciate transparency of the bidding process.
He noted that the negotiation process will be faster and accessible to registered taxpayers countrywide and globally.
“In the spirit of giving back to taxpayers, we are calling on those who have accrued interests up to December 2022 to take advantage of our Tax Amnesty programme and pay up the principal taxes due, so that we can write off the penalties and interests accrued.” said Mr Wattanga.
The Commissioner General said KRA is constantly determined to enhance voluntary compliance among taxpayers and urged taxpayers to embrace the programme before it closes in 30th June, 2024.
“All taxpayers are welcome to apply for waiver; for those who did not file their returns and accrued penalties for non-filing, they automatically qualify, and should go ahead and file their returns,” he said
The taxman says the agency expects to collect approximately Kshs. 50 billion from the tax amnesty programme.
Speaking during the unveiling of the online auction, Cabinet Secretary, of National Treasury And Economic Planning, Prof Njuguna Ndung’u said the Tax Amnesty programme is one of the government’s fiscal policy measures aimed at cushioning Kenyans and strengthening economic resilience during the adverse domestic and external headwinds being experienced globally.
The CS said that the Government is cognizant of the current changing environment and will continue to support private businesses’ capacity to adapt through reforms.
“Tax amnesties are projected to bring in additional revenue as taxpayers voluntarily report and pay taxes that may never be collected by the Government. The amnesty programme is expected to improve tax compliance as tax administrations learn from taxpayers’ previous behaviours, thereby allowing them to plan better.” said the CS.
The KRA Commissioner General said the authority will continue embracing technology in its quest to enhance tax compliance. He said the taxman has embraced a collaborative business model which incorporates taxpayers’ feedback.
Among the technologies that showcase this is the Electronic Tax Invoice Management System (eTIMS), rolled out in February 2023. A total of 95,732 VAT registered taxpayers had onboarded eTIMs by the end of FY 2022/23. according to KRA, eTIMS has helped minimise VAT fraud and increased tax revenue.
At the same time, Mr Wattanga said KRA has also integrated its systems with betting and gaming companies, with the aim of streamlining tax remittances from the sector and scaling up revenue collection.
“The programme has enabled KRA to make significant improvements in the sector’s tax administrative processes, with the daily visibility of the firms providing trends that inform compliance measures,” he said