Tax relief: The fine print

10 November 2020 | Economics

In a media release on 4 November 2020, the Ministry of Finance announced a relief to taxpayers with outstanding balances, with effect from 1 February 2021. The relief is aimed at supporting Namibian citizens and businesses facing hardship and cash flow problems exasperated by Covid-19.
According to an information piece by BDO, the finance ministry will write off 95% of the interest balance and reverse all penalties for taxpayers who settle the capital amount within a period of 3 months from 1 February 2021. Taxpayers who settle their capital before the commencement date and only have outstanding interest will also benefit.
Furthermore, the ministry will write off 75% of the interest balance and reverse all penalties for tax payers who settle the capital amount within a period of 12 (twelve) months from 1 February 2021. No capital amount owing to Inland Revenue Department (IRD) will be written off and consequently taxpayers who fail to settle the outstanding capital will not benefit from the relief programme.
Penalties and interest settled or set off prior to the effective date of the relief programme will not be refunded or credited.
Finally, all persons with outstanding taxes can partake in the relief programme which is applicable to all taxes administered by the IRD.
BDO said that to qualify, you need to meet the following criteria:
• Tax payers should first register as electronic filers on the portal of the Integrated Tax Administration System (ITAS).
• Upon registration as electronic filers, taxpayers must file all outstanding tax returns electronically on all active tax accounts.
• Taxpayers will only benefit upon settling the outstanding capital in full. Taxpayers who intend to pay installments are required to arrange a payment plan with any of the IRD regional offices or Satellite offices.
This relief program does not suspend the taxpayers’ obligation to pay taxes on time. The IRD will continue to collect outstanding taxes from taxpayers.

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