Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) and United Bank of Africa (UBA) have launched tax payments through online and point of sale –POS (card swiping) methods, powered by VISA and MasterCard.
Speaking at the launch of the service at URA’s headquarters in Nakawa on Tuesday March 28, URA’s Commissioner General Doris Akol and UBA’s CEO, Johnson Agoreyo said the solution allows tax payers to access services in a faster, easier and more convenient way. It is also expected to improve Uganda’s cost of doing business.
Officials said the service gives tax payers the ability to register a payment on URA’s portal and complete the payment on the bank’s portal in a few minutes; it also enables tax payers to use any VISA or MasterCard for both online and point of sale payment methods irrespective of the bank that issued the card.
It also supports real time access to government services paid for in the case of court bail, visa fees at the airport, passports, traffic fines and more. (SEE SCRIBD BELOW ON HOW TO MAKE A PAYMENT)
The service that costs a minimum of 3% per amount transacted allows a number of tax payment methods like cash, cheque, point of sale (cardless like payWay), mobile money, Real Time Gross Settlement and Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT).
The solution comes at a time when URA is under pressure to increase its capacity to collect both tax and non-tax revenues for central government – fees from ministries, departments and government agencies in addition to increasing general tax collections to meet the ever growing revenue targets for public sector funding.
The Nakawa based revenue body is expected to collect Shs 14.5 trillion in the coming financial year – 2017/2018 – which is a 15% increase on the projected outturn during the current fiscal year and amounts to 14% of GDP. The domestic revenue collection target will further increase to Shs 16.6 trillion or 14.3% of GDP in 2018/19 and further to 24.1 trillion or 15.2% of GDP by 2021/22.
With this new service, it is expected that URA will meet these collections in addition to improving its capacity to serve as single government payment window that will administer local government and petroleum revenues.
Akol said URA is in talks with other banks to launch a similar solution, which she said, was the first of its kind in East Africa.