7 February 2014

Cape Verde: The Ministry of Finance and Planning in Partnership with ICF and AfDB Announces Project in Cabo Verde to Modernise Tax Administration

press release

The Ministry of Finance and Planning in partnership with the Investment Climate Facility for Africa (ICF) and the African Development Bank (AfDB) has today officially launched a new project in Cabo Verde to modernise tax administration and make the tax system simple, efficient and more customer service oriented in order to improve the investment climate in Cabo Verde.

As part of this improvement, taxpayers will no longer need to travel to the Tax Revenue offices to pay their taxes, but instead they will be able to register, file and pay their taxes online. Micro and small enterprises will have a more simplified tax regime to enable them to pay their taxes in an easier, faster and simple way.

The project will streamline and simplify tax administration processes, thereby reducing the time and costs faced by businesses in paying their taxes. As a result, it is expected that businesses will have to make only 7 tax payments per year instead of the current 43. The simplifications will increase transparency and create a fair, competitive and predictable tax and overall business environment in Cabo Verde. In addition, the project will raise public awareness of the country's tax system and tax services and procedures to ensure taxpayers fully understand their tax obligations.

Speaking at the launching ceremony in Praia today, the Minister of Finance said: The Government of Cabo Verde is fully engaged and committed with the implementation of the tax reform. I strongly believe that this tax reform project will boost Cabo Verde's competitiveness and it will contribute to the consolidation of the rule of law and to the country´s macro-economic stability.

Fulfilling tax obligations remain challenging in Cabo Verde. Cabo Verdean Private Sector have highlighted that fiscal system constraints represents a significant barrier to business environment. As a result the Government is committed to promote improvements in order to develop investment climate.

Also speaking at the launching ceremony, ICF's Chief Executive Officer, William ASIKO, said:

'When a country has an efficient tax system, taxpayers are able to pay their taxes quickly and cost effectively. It encourages businesses to comply with their tax obligations and encourages those in the informal sector to formalize their businesses. More importantly, it increases a country's attractiveness as an investment destination, bringing greater economic benefits. ICF is pleased to partner with the Government of Cabo Verde in this initiative to improve the tax system in the country. And we continue to be encouraged by the strong political ownership of investment climate reforms in Cabo Verde.'

The AfDB's Chief Country Economist for Cabo Verde, Adalbert NSHIMYUMUREMYI, added:

'This project is consistent and complements other AfDB's operations in Cabo Verde, thereby creating a multiplier effect enabling stakeholders to implement planned reforms for improving the business climate. Especially, the AfDB approved last year two other operations: (i) A 15 Million EUR budget support (PAGEPPI) aiming at improving public corporate governance so as to streamline public expenditure and promoting private investment in order to increase its contribution to economic growth and foster job creation; and (ii) 878 000 EUR technical assistance grant to support ADEI in its capacity building efforts for micro, small and medium-sized enterprises (MSMEs) development through business incubators.'

Notes to editors:

The Investment Climate Facility for Africa is a unique public-private partnership between government and the private sector that aims to help Africa create a more attractive business environment and realize its potential as a global player and trading partner. The ICF works to remove real and perceived obstacles to domestic and foreign investment by assisting Africans to prepare and promote the continent as an investment destination. The ICF has the support of key Africa institutions, international development partners and private sector companies.

This is the second ICF project in Cabo Verde. It comes as ICF celebrates the success-to-date of its Cabo Verde Business Lifecycle Services Project which enhanced the country's innovative one-stop-shop for business registration model by including business licensing and introducing business closure procedures.

As a result of the Business Lifecycle Services Project, businesses in Cabo Verde can process a wholesale licence in 2 days instead of 15 days, a construction licence in 10 days instead of 30 days, and can formally close businesses in 2 to 10 days.

For more information on ICF visit www.icfafrica.org

The African Development Bank (AfDB) Group is one of the five major multilateral development Banks in the world that provide assistance to its regional member countries with a view to helping them achieve their development goals. The AfDB Group comprises three entities: the African Development Bank (ADB), the African Development Fund (ADF) and the Nigeria Trust Fund (NTF). The agreement establishing the AfDB on August 4, 1963 in Khartoum, Sudan became effective on September 10, 1964. The AfDB headquarters is officially in Abidjan, Côte d'Ivoire.

As the premier development finance institution on the continent, the overall objective of the AfDB Group is to support the economic development and social progress of African countries individually and collectively, by promoting investment of public and private capital in projects and programs designed to reduce poverty and improve living conditions. Combating poverty is at the heart of the Bank's efforts to assist the continent to attain sustainable economic growth.

The Bank started its operations in Cabo Verde in August 1977. In February 2014, it had already approved in total 50 operations (24 loan-projects, 11 studies, 6 institutional support projects, 4 operations to support the reforms, 1 emergency operation and 4 poverty reduction support operations) to a value of approximately UA 276 million (EUR 309 million). Today Bank's active portfolio in Cabo Verde comprises 8 operations of approximately UA 83 million (EUR 93 million) in following sectors: ITC (33.81%), transport (30.7%), multisector (18%), energy (16%) and water and sanitation (1.5%).

For more information on AfDB visit www.afdb.org

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