The Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA) was established by Act of Parliament Not. 11 of 1995, and started its operations on 1st July 1996. In carrying out its statutory functions, TRA is regulated by law, and is responsible for administering impartially various taxes of the Central Government.
What is VAT?
Is a consumption tax charged on taxable goods and services whenever value is added at each stage of production and at the final stage of sale. VAT is charged by business registered for VAT only.
What is the scope of VAT?
The VAT shall be charged on any supply of goods or services in Mainland Tanzania where it is a taxable supply made by a taxable person in the course of any business carried on by him. The VAT on the importation of taxable goods or services from any place outside Mainland Tanzania shall be charged VAT and the procedures applicable under the Customs Laws for imported goods shall apply in respect of VAT on imports.
This guide explains the taxation of companies, how a company will be required to provide the tax return information to TRA. It also provides links to more needed and detailed guidance.
Individuals are categorized in two groups, small individual traders who are not required to maintain audited accounts and the medium individual traders who are required to maintain audited accounts. Small traders are tax by presumptive tax system, whereas medium are taxed based on the annual profit determined from the audited accounts.
a) Presumptive tax system
This is a tax system where individuals are taxed based on their annual turnover. The Taxpayers under this system are not obligated to prepare and submit audited accounts to the TRA. However, he may opt not to apply the system and prepare audited accounts and pay tax based on profits.
Conditions which qualify to be in Presumptive tax system.
- the Taxpayer must be a resident individual
- the annual turnover of the business does not exceed the threshold of TSHS 20 million.
- he must conduct business only for the year of income hence not be engaged in any other activities such as employment or investments. Under the presumptive tax system, individual’s income must be derived solely from business sources. If income is derived from other sources such as employment and/or investment the presumptive scheme cannot be used.
- the individual’s income for any year must consist exclusively of income from business with sources in the United Republic of Tanzania.
Rates of tax under presumptive taxation.
Under this system, tax payable is established depending on the level of record keeping of the taxpayer. Failure to keep complete records necessitates establishment of tax payable by estimation settled between the TRA officers and taxpayers. There turnover bands and their tax rates are as stipulated below:
Tax Payable when records are incomplete.
Tax Payable when records are complete.
Where turnover does not exceed TSHS. 4,000,000
Where turnover exceeds TSHS. 4,000,000 but does not exceed TSHS. 7,500,000
2% of the turnover in excess of TSHS. 4,000,000
Where turnover exceeds TSHS 7,500,000 but does not exceed TSHS. 11,500,000
70,000+2.5% of the turnover in excess of TSHS. 7,500,000
Where turnover exceeds TSHS 11,500,000 but does not exceed TSHS. 16,000,000
170,000+3.0% in excess of TSHS. 11,500,000
Where turnover exceeds TSHS 16,000,000 but does not exceed TSHS. 20,000,000
305,000+3.5% in excess of TSHS. 16,000,000
b) Individuals who prepare audited accounts.
This is a group of taxpayers whose annual turnover is above TSHS 20,000,000 and are required to prepare audited accounts/financial statements in respect of their business. Taxpayers under this group are taxed basing on their profits.
Filing of tax returns and payment of tax.
The statement of estimated tax payable.
The statement of estimated tax payable is a provisional return which a taxpayer is required to complete and file to the Commissioner within three months from the beginning of the year of income (which for individuals shall be calendar year).
The taxpayer is supposed to pay the estimated tax in a maximum of four installments each falling due after three months. The Due dates are as follows:
· On or before 31st March
· On or before 30th June
· On or before 30th September
· On or before 31st December
Filing of Final returns.
· A taxpayer must file a final tax return to TRA within six months after the end of each tax year. The taxpayer must file return in the period between 1st January and 30th June
Late payment of tax.
Late payment and filing shall be charged interest at the prevailing statutory rate at the time of imposition plus 5% per annum
PAYE stands for Pay-As-You-Earn. It is a withholding tax on taxable incomes of employees. Under this system, an employer is required by law to deduct income tax from an employee's taxable salary or wages.
An employee means an individual who is a subject of an employment conducted by an employer. It includes a permanent employee, part time, manager, director and casual employees. Employees may be employed by one or more employers (Primary and Secondary Employment).
An employer means a person who conducts, has conducted or has prospect of conducting the employment of an individual.
Administration of PAYE
An employer is required to withhold income tax from salaries, wages and all other payments forming taxable income paid to an employee.
Invitation for tenders
Capital Gain from Realisation of Interest in Land or Buildings
Realisation of interest in land and Building
A person who owns an interest in land or building shall be treated as realising the asset when the person parts with ownership of such interest including when the it is sold, exchanged, transferred, distributed, cancelled, redeemed, destroyed or surrendered and in the case of interest of an entity when it ceases to exist, immediately before the entity ceases to exist.
The Income Tax Act requires a person who derives a gain from the realisation of an interest in land or buildings situated in the United Republic, to pay income tax by way of single instalment.
Excise Duty is a duty charged on specific goods and services manufactured locally or imported on varying rates. It is charged in both specific and ad valorem rates.
Items charged under specific rates include:
Wine, spirits, beer, soft drinks, mineral water, fruit juices, Recorded DVD,VCD,CD and audio tapes, cigarettes, tobacco, petroleum products, Natural gas and telecommunication sim cards.
Items charged under ad-valorem rates include:
Money transfer services, electronic communication services, pay to view television services, imported furniture, motor vehicles, plastic bags, specified aircrafts, firearms, specified cases, cosmetics and medicaments.
Ad-valorem rates are: 0%, 0.15%, 5%, 10%, 14.5%, 15%, 20%, 25% and 50%.
Liability to pay excise duty.
Excise duty shall become due and payable in respect of:
(a) any scheduled article imported, by the importer thereof at the time immediately before the article ceases to be subject to customs control or at such other time as may be directed by the Minister in the Gazette,
(b) any scheduled article manufactured in the United Republic of Tanzania, by the manufacturer:
(i) upon sale of the article by him, or
(ii) upon the article ceasing to be subject to customs control, or
(iii) upon removal of the article from the premises where it manufactured, whichever first occurs.
(c) any scheduled article manufactured or imported by any person free of duty and which is subsequently sold to any other person, by the purchaser at the time of the sale of the article by him;
(d) any electronic communication service supplied by electronic communication service provider at the time when such mobile, fixed or wireless phone is in use or when payment is received for the service whichever time shall be the earliest.
(e) any pay-to-view satellite television service provider when the service is supplied.
Law governing tax objections and appeals
Objections and Appeals is governed by Tax Revenue Appeals Act, Cap.408 as revised from time to time.
Introduction to objection and appeals
Tanzanian tax laws allow any person who feels aggrieved to request a formal change to an official decision regarding tax assessment made by the Commissioner General. A taxpayer who feels that the Commissioner General misapplied the law, came to an incorrect factual finding, abused his powers, was biased, considered evidence which he should not have considered or failed to consider evidence that he should have considered in making an assessment, may object against such an assessment.
What are the due dates for payment of duties and taxes?
- Withholding taxes are payable within seven (7) days after the end of calendar month
- Taxes payable in installments (Provisional assessed tax) payable on quarterly basis e.g in case of taxpayers whose accounting periods ends on 30th December the installments shall be due by the end of March, June, September and December.
- Self-assessed tax is payable on the date of filling the final return of income ( 6 months after the end of the year of income
- Jeopardy assessed tax is payable on the date specified on the notice of assessment
- Adjusted assessed tax is payable within 30 days from the date of assessment
Value Added Tax (VAT)
VAT is payable within 30 days following the month of business that is due date of submitting the Return
Duties and Taxes on importation of goods are payable within 30 days from the date of assessment
Who qualifies as a returning resident?
Is a person arriving on first arrival to Tanzania whom the proper officer is satisfied that is bonafide changing residence from a place outside Tanzania to a place in Tanzania, where the person has neither been granted an exemption or is not resided in Tanzania before his arrival other than on temporary non-resident visits
Downloadable Tax Forms
Motor vehicles are used by many and unspecified persons on public roads and they are given social recognition only after been inspected and registered. Motor vehicles are also subject to deterioration and wear of both the structure and equipment and sometimes their shapes and modified.
What are the laws governing registration of motor vehicles?
The registration of motor vehicles in Tanzania Mainland is governed by:
- The Road Traffic Act No. 30 of 1973
- Motor Vehicles (Tax on Registration and Transfer) Act 1972
- Traffic (Foreign Vehicles) Rules 1973
- Road Traffic (Motor Vehicles Registration) (Amendment) Regulations, 2001
The objective of this system is to monitor and control the issuance of driving licences with a view to addressing the problem of fake licences which are the cause for many road accidents. This is because the system allows everybody to obtain any licence and drive any car one prefers. However under the current system holders of driving licence of certain class will be obliged to drive only such a class upon which he was tested for and not otherwise. At the initial stage the applicant will have to undergo biometric measures and finger prints.
Who are the beneficiaries of tax incentives?
Tax incentives are granted to both local and foreign investors provided they are registered by Tanzania Investment Centre (TIC) and/or Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA).Tax incentives are mainly in the form of enhanced capital deductions and allowances. They are structured as according to the lead and priority sectors including Agriculture, agro-based industries, mining, tourism, petroleum and gas and economic infrastructure (Road, railways, air and sea transport, port facilities, telecommunication, banking & insurance).
Please indicate your TIN and select the right GFS code whenever making electronic Payment. In case of any problem Accountant -Large Taxpayers Department Tel.+255 22 2130173 or +255 22 2130185
Tanzania Revenue Authority (TRA) was established under the Tanzania Revenue Authority Act No.11 0f 1995.The Authority is a semi-autonomous agency of the Government responsible for the administration of the Central Government taxes as well as several non-tax revenues. TRA is currently implementing its fourth Corporate Plan whose vision is to increase revenue to GDP to 19.9% by 2018.
TRA would like to recruit dynamic experienced and qualified personnel to fill vacant positions in the Domestic Revenue and Customs & Excise Departments. Applications are therefore invited from suitably qualified Tanzanians for the following positions:
The fifth edition of the Taxpayer’s Service Charter has been prepared to replace the fourth edition with a view of taking into account the changes which are currently taking place in our society and more specifically in the tax administration.
As part of the Public Service Reform Programs which emphasizes on transparency and provision of quality service to every citizen, TRA being a public institution, established a Taxpayer’s Service Charter which stipulates taxpayers rights, obligations and service standards expected from TRA.
TRA is implementing the Fourth Corporate Plan whose Vision is To increase revenue to GDP ratio to 19.9% by 2018
In response to Government Policies of increasing domestic revenue contribution and increase revenue yield to Sub Saharan averages in the next five years, This will be achieved through improving efficiency in tax administration and widening the tax net in order to collect more revenue. TRA believes that it is possible to mobilise revenue in a simplified and transparent manner and taxpayers shall have easy access to services that are offered promptly and by putting in place a transparent system where taxpayers and stakeholders can be aware of their tax obligations, rights and service standards, set by the Authority that will enable them to complain whenever such rights or services are not provided as stipulated in the Charter.
The Charter explains service level standards as well as the taxpayers’ rights which are covered in tax laws and reinforce the existing tripartite relationship of TRA-Public-Private Partnership which is based on mutual respect and trust.
In the event of conflict of interpretation between this Charter and the tax laws, the proper interpretation of the law shall prevail.
Tax Laws 2
CUSTOMS AND EXCISE DEPARTMENT
It is notified for information to the general public that the under listed goods will be sold by public auction or disposed of in the manner the Commissioner for Customs and Excise may deem fit if they remain un-cleared from the Customs area within thirty (30) days from the date of this notice.
The Auction Sales will be conducted at the Customs Warehouses and Areas situated in from 10:00 am on the dates and places as shown below:-
- Thursday the 15th May, 2014 – TPA, KICD, JEFAG, Horohoro, Arusha, Mwanza, Mtwara, Newala, Mtambaswala, Kigoma, Dodoma, KIA, Morogoro and Sirari.
- Monday the 19th May, 2014 – Africarriers, CFAO, Scania, CMC, CM Co. Ltd and Diamond Motors.
- Thursday the 22nd May, 2014 – Mazrui, Koru, Sozmy, CMC, PFG, TEC, Busara, Betel, Yokohama, Jiefang, Kishen, Chodasama, Rasco and Car & General.
- Monday the 26th May, 2014 – RT East Africa, Tanzania Episcopal, Saber, Commercial (T) Vehicles, Tanzania 4 by 4, Shalimar, Alliance and Noble Motors.
The goods may be viewed by public during working hours two days before the day of the auction.
CONDITIONS OF SALE
- Successful bidders will be required to pay 25% of the purchase price on the spot. The remaining 75% must be paid within 48 hours after the auction sale;
- Any person who makes the highest bid and fails to pay the mandatory 25% of the purchase price on the spot will be charged for the interference with the auction process with malicious intension and stern legal measures will be taken against such person;
- Goods will be sold in lots of full consignments; and
- Goods may be withdrawn from the auction upon full payment of the respective duties and taxes, or in special cases by permission of the Commissioner for Customs and Excise