Tax body, Uganda Revenue Authority(URA) has announced collecting shs 19.2 trillion in the last financial year 2020/21 which represented a 14.9% growth in revenue.
“URA collected a net revenue of shs19263 billion(shs19.2trillion) and posted a growth in revenue of 14.99% in comparison to the FY 2019/20 and an estimated tax to GDP ratio of 12.99 percent. In real terms, this reflects a growth in revenue of UGX 2,511.36 billion and growth in the Tax to GDP ratio by 1%. This the highest growth registered in the last four years,” said URA Commissioner General, John Musinguzi Rujoki on Thursday.
He however noted that they fell short of the shs21.6 billion target by shs2.3 trillion.
Highest revenue growth
The tax body said their revenue collections had grown by shs1.7 trillion in 2017, shs2.1trillion in 2018 and shs134 billion in 2019,adding that the shs19.2 trillion last year represented a 14.9% growth which is the highest in four years.
According to Rujoki they collected shs12 trillion from domestic revenue indicating a shs1.4 trillion growth representing 13.71% whereas this was below the shs14 trillion target.
“We collected shs3.1 trillion from Pay As You Earn, shs2.9 trillion from Value Added Tax, shs1.5 trillion as corporate tax , shs1.4trillion as Local Excise Duty and shs1.1trillion as withholding tax,” he said.
He noted that URA was able to collect shs7.5 trillion as revenue from customs revenue after registering a 16.43% growth in collection compared to the previous year but noted this fell short of the sh8 trillion target.
The URA Commissioner General mentioned VAT on imports at shs2.8 trillion, petroleum duty at shs 2.4 trillion and the shs1.4 trillion on import duty as the largest contributors to the customs revenue.
The statistics by URA also indicated that 71% of the revenue was got from the top four sector of wholesale and retail trade(shs5.7 trillion); manufacturing(shs4.4trillion),ICT(shs2 trillion )and shs 1.6 trillion from the financial and insurance services sector.
“There was a growth in revenue from key sectors like manufacturing which grew by 27.52%, information and communication by 25.73%, wholesale and retail by 19.13% and financial and insurance services by 5.55%,”Rujoki said.
The URA Commissioner General attributed the growth in revenues to the debt recovery mechanisms which led to the recovery of shs1 trillion.
He mentioned these mechanisms as alternative dispute resolution which saw the tax body collect shs365billion and the voluntary disclosure initiative among others.
“The implementation of the Digital Tracking Solutions (DTS) and the Electronic Fiscal Receipting Solution (EFRIS) boosted performance. DTS contributed to the 16.89 percentage growth in Excise Duty collections by aiding the enforcement and tracking of locally manufactured and imported goods,”Rujoki said.
“ EFRIS contributed to the 14.73 percentage growth in VAT collections, through relaying real-time taxpayer transaction details to URA, thereby minimizing underreporting of VAT collected from consumers. It should be noted that both technologies are still being rolled out and not yet fully enforced.”
He noted that online services to taxpayers such as the different payment modes, online taxpayer education campaigns like Kakasa, improved contact centre and issuance of clearance tax certificates highly contributed to the growth in the tax administration.
The tax shortfalls in revenue collection were however largely caused by the impact of the Coronavirus pandemic and its effects on the economy like the lockdown which slowed business in many sectors.
““PAYE was one of the major tax heads affected leading to shortfall of Shs315.51 billion, mainly due to scale down in the number of employees by some organizations. The corporate tax collections were also below target by Shs239.93 billion, owing to losses made in the adversely affected sectors,” he said.