By Abel Muhatia @abelmuhatia
Kenya Revenue Authority has today introduced new changes in their online platform for filing returns dubbed the I-Tax system in bid to boost tax compliance and revenue collection.
This comes even as 30th June 2015 deadline of filing returns for the year ending of 2014-2015 comes to a close. Introduction of a single number for subscribers transacting online is among the key change, inclusive of all tax registration and instant status enquiries.
“ I-Tax has won the market confidence since its introduction hence doing away with the notion that it would never work for KRA does not promote development of Technology systems which do not deliver” said KRA Commissioner General John Njiraini during a press briefing.
Due to this improvement, taxpayers are now required to…use only their pin number when submitting returns for PAYE, Excise and VAT.
In addition, the system is capable of detecting on filing or misfiling during the file process. The system is expected to reduce queuing and brokers around their stations, as it does not involve face-to-face communications inorder to reduce net loss collections.
Njiraini confirmed that With I-tax system, any subscriber is able to receive a Personal identification number or Tax compliance certificate online in addition to a receipt once on completion of the file return process. According to Njiraini, the… digital system has achieved reduction of VAT period to an average of 62 to 72 minutes. For large corporates using the system for file returns, they can use upto a maximum of 75 minutes for VAT.
The Authority has also made steps to devolve its services by opening key centres across the nation in partnership with ICPAK and KEPSA.
They have also gotten a desk at Huduma centres. In another angle, Njiraini touched on their efforts to partner with the county governments to reduce net loss and come up with specialized audit centres to exploit economies of all skills in the county level.
“We are currently speaking with the county governments as we also made a presentation during the recent devolution conference with an aim of devolving our services further when time is due in the next financial year” noted Njiraini.
He however asked citizens to embrace the system, as it is simple, swift and secure, If not safe with manual filings. Having been launched in less than a year ago, the online system to file returns has so far achieved a population of over 1.1 million annually an equivalent of 60,000 people using it per month hence creating more value addition.