Sterner measures boost mines' contribution: Zimra

HARARE - Tax collector Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) said sterner measures in monitoring mines’ activities have improved revenue collections from the mining sector.

Sternford Moyo, Zimra chairperson, said mining royalties collections were five percent higher than target in 2012 at $136, 9 million.

“This was mainly due to increased audits and investigation activities,” Moyo said.

He said the upward review of royalties on gold and platinum from 4,5 percent and five percent to seven percent and 10 percent respectively further contributed to the positive performance of the revenue head.
This comes after Finance minister Tendai Biti called for stricter supervision of all mining operations to curb irregularities and revenue leakages.

Biti has accused the mines of contributing “little” to the fiscus, despite exporting minerals worth billions of dollars.

Despite the country boasting of large mineral reserves of gold, diamonds, platinum, chrome among others, Zimbabwe has failed to leverage on the minerals due to leakages.

According to treasury, most mineral leakages in the country are in the diamond sector where as of October last year exports stood at $563 561 495 but only $41 million was remitted.

Meanwhile, Moyo said Zimra surpassed the annual revenue target of $3,2 billion collecting a total $3,5 billion — a seven percent increase.

“Value added tax and individuals contributed to the bulk of the revenue with 33 percent and 21 percent respectively,” said Moyo adding that companies’ contributions were on third place with 14 percent while excise and customs duty contributed 12 percent and 11 percent respectively.

The last quarter of the year saw revenue inflows improving significantly with the month of December recording the highest collections of $414, 58 million.

Moyo said revenue targets were surpassed because of the effective revenue enhancing projects that were carried out by his organisation to enforce compliance by clients.

Zimra collected $824,4 million during the third quarter of last year marginally surpassing its target of $822,6 million. During the period under review Zimra said much of the revenue was derived from Value Added Tax ($271,1 million), Individual Tax ($163,03 million) and Company Tax ($117,2 million).

“Net collections amounted to $823,4 million against a target of $822,6 million, resulting in a positive variance of 0,1 percent. A large portion of revenue was realised from VAT, Individual Tax and Company Tax,” Moyo said.

He said the money collected was 15 percent above the $717,4 million collected in the same period last year. Moyo said the improved revenue figures were due to improvements in capacity utilisation in industry among others.

“The gradual improvements in local capacity utilisation that boosted collections as more locally produced goods which attract VAT were available on shelves of most retailers.

“Compliance checks that were carried out by Zimra also improved inflows under VAT,” he said.

Zimra also collected $89,7 million against a target of $97,6 million in import duty although it was an improvement on the $85,2 million collected in 2011 third quarter.

“The decline in import levels as a result of the improvement in local capacity utilisation has suppressed the performance of this revenue head.

The economy is no longer fully reliant on imports implying that the propensity to import dutiable products has also declined,” Moyo said.

Excise duty contributed $101,8 million to total collections against a target of $103,1 million. - Business Writer

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