BUJUMBURA August 13rd (ABP) – The Burundi Revenue Authority (OBR) noted a decrease in tax evasion over the 2012-2017 period, but paradoxically, in the last five years, the annual revenues earned by the service of investigations on internal taxes and non-tax revenues from the tax audits of taxpayers denounced by informants increased compared to the years 2015, 2016 and 2017, which may explain an upsurge in fraud, said Mr. Aloys Ndayishimiye, OBR executive.
Indeed, he said, these revenues that were 1,766,016,022 BIF in 2015; 1,540,149,777 BIF in 2016 and 1,147,278,821 BIF in 2017 increased to 50,013,581,229 BIF in 2018.
Regarding the strategies to combat tax fraud, Mr. Ndayishimiye said that these are made by the prevention of tax fraud on the one hand, and by the repression of tax evasion on the other hand. To prevent tax fraud, he said, the best way is to schedule tax audits. The tax administration must also collect information, use informants and fight against the informal sector, by identifying new taxpayers.
The tax authorities can check, in the office and on the spot, taxpayers’ declarations as well as the acts and documents used for their establishment. They can also check the documents filed by taxpayers, in order to benefit from deductions, restitutions or refunds of taxes. In order to detect such fraud, the OBR should be in possession of all information about the taxpayer, both externally and internally.
Mr. Ndayishimiye also pointed out that the informal sector is one of the forms of tax evasion, stating that the fight against the informal sector requires firstly to locate and make census or identify the taxpayer population, by means of a unique tax and reliable identifier.