Tanzania: Fake Goods On the Decline As Tanzania Rolls Out Electronic Stamps

(file photo).

Dodoma — The number of counterfeits in the market is increasingly falling as the Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA) rolls out its Electronic Tax Stamps (ETS), according to deputy minister for Industry and Trade.

The minister, Ms Stella Manyanya, told reporters on the sideline of the just-ended parliamentary sessions last week that since the country started rolling out the stamps, the number of fake products in the market was steadily going down.

The ETS enables the government to use modern technology to obtain production data timely from manufacturers. The new technology, she said, helps the government to curb revenue leakages and also helps it to determine in advance the amount of taxes to be paid as Excise Duty, Value Added Tax (VAT) and Income Taxes. The first phase of the project - being rolled out by a Swiss firm, Société Industrielle et Commerciale de Produits Alimentaires (SICPA) - was launched on January 15, this year (2019) during which period, electronic stamps were installed in 19 companies that produce alcohol, wines and spirits across the country.

Phase 2 of the project, which saw electronic stamps being installed on products such as sweetened or flavoured waters and other non alcoholic beverages, began on August 1 and according to Ms Manyanya, the outcomes have so far been encouraging.

"During the period, we have seen the challenge of counterfeits in the market going down. We must win this fight and the ETS offers us an opportunity to achieve the goal," she said, calling for concerted efforts among stakeholders to defeat the vice.

Ms Manyanya said Tanzania, like other countries across the world, has its means of protecting its quality and domestically manufactured products against unfair competition.

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