Liberia: LRA Recognizes Highest Tax Contributors of 2019

Orange, ArcelorMittal, Monrovia Breweries top the list

The Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA), in observance of its customary "Tax Appreciation Day", meant to recognize taxpayers has named for the second time Orange-Liberia, one of the two GSM communication companies operating in the country, as the highest contributor for 2018/2019 fiscal year, winning the Gold Prize meant for an institution or individual in such a category.

At the appreciation day ceremony on July 10, 2019 at the Paynesville City Hall, the LRA, having named institutions in various categories according their contributions announced loudly Orange-Liberia, accompanied by rounds of applause.

Prior to presenting the Gold Prize to Orange, LRA Commissioner General, Thomas Doe Nah, recognizing former Commissioner General Elfrieda Stewart-Tamba who designed this program two years ago, said the appreciation is meant to recognize efforts of taxpayers who remain dedicated and committed to their civil obligations amidst challenges and pains associated with spending.

"Tax payment is a civil obligation and, without it, the government cannot contend with social developments and salaries paid to civil servants in the country," CG Doe Nah said.

Besides showing gratitude to taxpayers, the LRA Commissioner General said the program also cherishes the relation between the LRA and tax complaints to remain mutual in civil duties and responsibilities.

Taxation is, at least in many instances, embraced by payers disdainfully especially when paying taxes and the citizens are not realizing much return in the form of development especially in a developing country like Liberia.

As such, many will tend to evade tax which consequently brings shortcomings in government's operation. If others would brave the storm to comply with their civil duties, Mr. Doe Nah said it is better that they are appreciated to have a sense of gratitude for the sacrifices.

According to him, the LRA does not overlook any taxpayer in the country; what remains truthful is that everyone cannot be called out at once to receive appreciation, and this is why people and institutions are categorized in specific qualities and standard to receive appreciation on behalf of all taxpayers.

The program on July 10 was attended by a number of government and diplomatic officials including the Minister of Finance and Development Planning, Samuel Tweah; Commerce and Industry Minister, Wilson Tarpeh; Director of Cabinet Jordan Slunteh; outgoing USAID Liberia Mission Director, Anthony Chan, among others.

Following Orange Liberia in the Domestic Tax over all highest contributor category is ArcelorMittal Liberia, clinching the Silver Prize, while the Monrovia Breweries Incorporated took Bronze in the third place.

In other categories, APM Terminals was rated as the most compliant in the Large Tax Division; Firestone Liberia the most compliant in the Natural Resource Tax Division, Kpassakoi Trading Corporation, most compliant in the Medium Tax Division; John Building Material Center in the Small Tax Division, and Kumba Joseph Business Center in the Petty Trader category as most compliant.

There is also an eFiling system that taxpayers are to make use of to comply with the tax obligation, and the most compliant in this category came to be TOTAL Liberia. The most compliant in the Direct Transfer category for 2019 is DHL International, Liberia.

In the Real Property Tax category, Adeline Morris tended to be the highest contributor, Dr. Henrique F. Tokpa, highest contributor in the residential category; Barry Bobadjogo, highest contributor in the vacant land category under Real Property, and TOTAL Liberia in the Commercial category.

Under the Tax Based Office (TBO) category, A.M. Bah Incorporated became the highest contributor in Bomi County; Falibina Inc., the highest in Grand Cape Mount County; Save the People Restaurant in Gbarpolu County; Green Pasture Funeral Services, Inc. in Margibi County; Jeff's Merchandise & General Services Inc. in Lofa County; Jesus Power Business Center in Grand Kru County, and Passion Guest House in Bong County.

In Grand Gedeh County, Marche Business Center emerged as the highest contributor; FaceBook Entertainment in Rivercess County, Kanweaken Redlight in River Gee County, Mariama Sall Shop in Maryland County; Black and White Entertainment in Grand Bassa County, De-Ta Inc in Nimba County and Mississippi Inc. in Sinoe County.

Sector Ministries are also contributors to the tax, and the Ministry of Transport came up as the highest contributor in this category. Pacesetter-User of Mobile Money was taken by the Ministry of Health, and the most compliant Tax Practitioners using e-Filings were taken by T.D. Joseph & Associates, and Pan African Consultancy.

At Customs, highest contributors came in different categories to be: Highest Merchandise in first place, Fresh Frozen Food, Inc.; A-Z Cooperation in second place, highest contributor in Petroleum Industry, TOTAL first, and the second highest contributor being Petro Trade.

The Importer category considered Bridgeway Corporation as the first, and UN Drive Supermarket came second.

Land Border Custom Based Office highest contributor to the tax basket for 2019 is Loguatuo, Nimba County, and the Ganta Port of Entry, also in Nimba, came second in this category.

Snokri Incorporated and Monetel Incorporated came out as the first and second most compliant, respectively, in the Customs Broker category.

Special Achievement Award for contributions to LRA's Development & Growth went to former Commissioner General, Elfrieda Tamba, and Special Recognition for Contributions to Domestic Resource Mobilization went to USAID outgoing Director, Dr. Anthony Chan.

Others recognized in a special way for their contributions towards the Liberia Revenue Authority include: European Union, Open Society Initiative for West Africa, United Nations Development Programme, African Development Bank, International Monetary Fund, Deutsche Gesellschaft Fur Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), Overseas Development Institute, China Aid and USAID.

Certificate of Achievement for successful incorporation of new technology (Mobile Money) in your business process went to the National Fire Service, Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Liberia National Police, and Liberia Business Registry.

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