Mozambique: Tax Authority Owes Taxpayers 8.5 Billion Meticais

Maputo — Maputo, 26 Dec (AIM) - The Mozambican tax authority owes around 8.5 billion meticais (about 283 million US dollars) in rebates to taxpayers.

The chairperson of the AT, Rosario Fernandes, admitted this debt at a ceremony on Tuesday marking the seventh anniversary of the creation of the AT.

The amount that taxpayers owe the state in overdue taxes is rather more than four billion meticais. So in net terms, the balance is a state debt of 4.5 billion meticais.

Fernandes said the great majority of this debt - more than 96 per cent - consists of Value Added Tax (VAT) rebates. 70 per cent of the rebates are claimed by the megaprojects

Fernandes said the megaprojects are also responsible for much of the tax debt. If they are taken out of the picture the remaining rebates amount to slightly more than one per cent of annual tax collection.

Fernandes announced that the total fiscal revenue collected by the AT, in taxes and customs duties, this year, up to 20 December, was 124.4 billion meticais, about four billion more than the target laid down in the 2013 budget, as amended by the country's parliament, the Assembly of the Republic, in August.

Fernandes also announced that the AT had registered about 40,000 visitors entering Mozambique from South Africa up until 18 December, a week before Christmas. In that period, 5,000 vehicles had been registered crossing the border from South Africa to Mozambique at Ressano Garcia.

He said the AT, together with the police and the immigration authorities had launched “Operação Sossego 2014 (Operation Calm 2014)”, to improve flexibility in the movement of people and goods across the border. With customs arrangements in place for commercial traffic at spots seven kilometres before the frontier in South Africa, and four kilometres after it in Mozambique “we were able to achieve better levels of management of the circulation of people, goods and merchandise”.

Fernandes said he expected still better performance in 2014, after the AT signs a memorandum of understanding with its South African counterpart in the first half of next year.

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