URA to develop curriculum to equip the informal enterprises from the grass root.
Uganda is estimated to have over 7 million highly productive people however much of them are not on the tax register due to being informal in their setup.
In order to improve the tax base, and enable the informal sector join the tax bracket, Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) as part of the implementation of the strategic plan on domestic revenue mobilisation, is in high gears to develop a curriculum to sensitive the informal sector tax payers and Ugandan students at lower levels of education to enlighten them on different tax and Business regulations.
According to URA the program is being tackled through engagement with different stakeholders including National Curriculum Development Council, BTVET among others.
During the launch of the study findings conducted by both URA and Twaweza, on Tuesday 13th September 2022 at Hotel African, Michael Madembe Manager Tax Education at URA pictured above said that in order strategically Intervene in boosting the tax base, there is need to address the problem of informal from where it originates from which he said is the reason URA is targeting the students to allow them aware of tax before they engage in any business.
“The strategic intervention is to address the issue of where the informal sector derives from. There is need arrest the situation through tax education in the curriculum program being developed by URA for secondary school Sat Ordinary level forward in order for them to know what to do with regulators” he said
He said that though the research finding have highlighted some issue which give a task to URA to address, there is already functions in the system ensuring there is intergrity, confident and reviews to serve the people better.
“we are doing our best to enable automation and simple methods to for highly used processes including TIN registration which he said has been made simple through online application like phones” he said.
The Senior Economist with Ministry of Finance, Planning and economic Development Isaac Arinaitwe there is need to coordinate all the tax revenue mobilisers in government to avoid unfair tax system through taking stock of all charges to harmonize tax imposition and tax payment.
“we need to remover the unfairness of the tax system compared to the various taxes paid by the citizens. We need to take stock of all the tax charges to remove irrelevant ones, merge some or increase the good ones” he said
Francis Kabuye The Head Policy and Advocacy at The Federation of Small and Medium Enterprises said that there is need to enhance sensitive the business leaders on how to manage business through incubation centres and survive challenges to avoid business collapsing.
Some of the key findings of the in the research includes the following: Citizens are more likely to rate the performance of URA as good than bad, though most unsure, 1 out of 20 have had contact with URA, citizens are confident that government can prosecute tax evaders, but don’t think current tax rates are fair, fewer citizen say that they would cheat on taxes, but fewer also say they would pay taxes without any enforcement among others.