Set Frw70 billion next quarter
The Rwanda Revenue Authority (RRA) collected Frw69 b at the close of the first quarter of this year. This figure exceeds the Frw65b revenue target by 7.1 per cent. The state has therefore asked the tax body to collect Frw70.446 billion next quarter. The next quarter starts in May 2008 and ends August the same year.
The rosy performance comes despite speculations that the Kenyan post election disturbances would impact negatively on revenue collection in the land locked Rwanda.
“The supply kept on sipping through the central corridor and this way Rwanda was able to survive the shock,” Mary Baine, Commissioner General of RRA said.
The average cost of collecting this revenue was Frw1 per every Frw38. The statistics show that the total revenue growth rate for the first quarter 2008 was 26.6 per cent.
Taxes on international trade registered an impressive performance over the target by about 4.5 per cent. This achievement, according Baine was mainly due to the increase in the volume of imports and efficiency in RRA.
The services were recently computerised. She also said the tax body introduced a faster clearance regime that reduced delays and increased the volume of imports.
“The turnaround time has reduced almost by three after introducing preclearance,” Baine said.
The statistics indicate that taxes on goods and services contributed the largest share of revenues, hitting a 51.1 per cent mark.
Taxes on direct and international trade contributed 36.1 per cent and 12.8 per cent respectively. Taxes on goods and services exceeded the target by 6.4 per cent.
According to figures the consumption for some excisable products like beer, lemonade, cigarettes, wines and liquors increased. This also contributed to an increase in the VAT levied. The tax body collected less excise taxes on petrol, air time and powdered milk.
RRA’s first quarter Revenue Performance Report says petroleum products were affected by the continued rise of prices on the international market.
To maintain a stable economy, government does not collect any customs duty on oil products. The move, is also aimed at keeping the fuel pump prices in the country affordable but keep oil dealers in business.
“Subsidies on premium motor spirit (petrol) are close to 100 per cent while automotive gas oil (diesel) is 101 per cent”.
Baine said lack of qualified accountants in some provinces to assist taxpayers in the preparation of books of accounts is still a challenge.
“This challenge is mainly a result of inadequate skills in ICT,” she said.