The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) is set to accelerate technology adoption in tax administration to boost compliance and improve effectiveness and efficiency. KRA emphasised on a more tax friendlier environment to spur compliance.
At the 3rd Annual Tax Summit 2017 themed: Rethink, Remodel, Rebuild: Enhancing Tax Systems for Sustainable Economic Development, delegates, who consisted of government officials, academia experts and regional revenue authorities representatives, explored the administrative and operational challenges within the tax environment, challenges affecting growth of the tax base and cultural challenges that affect tax compliance.
Speaking during the event, KRA Commissioner General John Njiraini noted that KRA’s transformation journey shifted the KRA’s focus from enforcement to building taxpayer trust through facilitation.
“The Kenya Revenue Authority has been at the forefront in transforming the country’s tax system with the goal of enhancing efficiency and tax compliance to achieve a friendlier and a more participatory tax regime,” Mr Njiraini said.
He added: “This year’s summit is in line with KRA’s current strategic plan, which is overseeing a radical business model shift from compliance by enforcement approach to engaging taxpayers to ensure that KRA systems are more efficient secure and credible while exhibiting transparency and accountability.”
As part of the initiatives to transform the tax system, KRA will in April next year rollout the Integrated Customs Management System (iCMS) to seal loopholes in tax evasion. iCMS is a modern Customs management system. The new system will be a game changer in the Customs and Border Control Department. iCMS will foster faster clearance of cargo at the port, streamline Customs processes and enhance trade facilitation in Kenya and the entire East Africa Community (EAC) region.
KRA has been at the pole position in this crucial journey of transforming the tax system with the goal of enhancing efficiency. One of its key pillars is leveraging on technology for full electronic customer service. Through technology as its key driver, KRA has raised the bar in the ease of doing business by enhancing operational efficiency and service delivery. This is in line with best practice aimed to achieve high customer satisfaction levels.
KRA has also put in place a robust stakeholder engagement structure that allows for continuous dialogue on tax matters. The organisation is in its final stages of installing a Customer Relationship Management System as this forms part of KRA’s service delivery model redesigning that places the customer at the fore front. iSupport, an enterprise resource planning system has also been rolled out to enhance operational efficiency.
KRA Commissioner Strategy, Innovation and Risk Management Dr Mohammed Omar Mohammed noted that the 3rd Annual Tax Summit is the prime event to innovate ideas, engage in fruitful discussions and have better methodologies for enhancing the tax base.
“A participatory approach in our tax environment leads to a better and efficient tax administration. At KRA, we have embraced the need to have an integrated approach to advocate for a more stakeholder need driven tax environment. We have witnessed a gradual transformation of mind-set to that of a learning organisation.”
The tax summit aims at strengthening relationships with stakeholders, demystify taxation and its role in socio-economic development of a country. It will also align tax policies to emerging trends and innovations while creating a platform for sharing research outputs, experiences and knowledge on taxation.