Refer to the article, “Tricks traders use to evade billions of francs in taxes” (The New Times, October 10).
I am not supporting those who evade taxes but RRA should understand that paying taxes is an education which comes with experience.
The majority of our people cheat because they don’t understand those tax rules and think they are making profit, which itself is wrong because they don’t know how to claim VAT.
RRA should, first of all, educate, rather than rush to close businesses. RRA is instead killing our country due to their unprofessionalism and high-handedness of what they do. I am afraid this kind of approach will only hurt the country’s economy.
If we have crimes against national security, I believe these tricks should be classified as crimes against the economy hence amounting to possible economic sabotage.
I admit I am one of those shoppers who don’t insist on receipts but, as some readers suggested here, we need concerted efforts to promote this as a national culture. As a country which is trying to move away from heavy dependency on aid, domestic taxes hold the key.
For the case of VAT, from the article I understand that the consumer has already paid for it so it’s inexcusable for the seller not to declare it to the tax collector, hence evasion.
The problem in Rwanda is that authorities don’t concentrate much on creating “tax base” as opposed to typical “tax collection”. That’s why businesses try to evade paying taxes.
18 per cent is too much in a society where the economy is highly dependent on subsistence agriculture. Developed nations like USA run on small businesses, where every idea and activity is supported, but here in Rwanda, you can’t import a brand new vehicle, for instance, individually, unless you pay 100 per cent tax on it. That has practically killed competition and innovation.
Circulation of currency in high volume among people creates wealth, enlarges tax base, and then the government gets its share in high volume.
70 individuals paying 4 per cent tax each is easier for them and government than 10 people paying 18 per cent tax, individually. Create taxpayers, rather than tax laws.