MRA endeavours to counter smuggling

MRA endeavours to counter smuggling

The Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) has intensified efforts to curb smuggling, a vice that is costing the economy millions in unpaid taxes.

Speaking during a media tour of the public tax collector’s Inland Examination Centre in Chirimba, Blantyre, MRA deputy commissioner responsible for the port Moses Masiye said since opening the centre in 2022, MRA has registered improved revenues in imported taxes.

He said: “Technical smuggling is a big issue in MRA that we are working to mitigate.

“Prior to the establishment of the centre, we had many cases of under-declaration and falsifying invoices… But the coming in of the centre has helped check that and also improved accountability.”

Masiye briefs journalists on the operations of the inland examination centre

Masiye said the centre inspects containers of imported goods from mostly Mwanza, Dedza and Songwe border posts, a  process which takes a minimum of two days.

“But when it is detected that the containers, which get an MRA electronic seal to monitor cargo consignments in order to curb smuggling and improve revenue collection, we seize the consignment and impose a fine according to the Customs and Excise Act,” he said.

Recently, MRA also expanded its patrol footprints with the Flexible Anti-Smuggling Team (Fast) to prevent importation and exportation of illegal and harmful products.

MRA data shows that through the Fast operation, the public tax collector recorded 421 cases with estimated K2.2 billion value for duty purposes (VDP) against K1.7 billion duty in 2021; 440 cases in 2022 with estimated K3.4 billion VDP against K2.6 billion duty collected; and 419 recorded so far in 2023, with an estimated K3.3 billion VDP, and the cases are bound to rise by the end of this financial year.

Meanwhile, MRA marketing and communications manager Wilma Chalulu said the Mwanza Border Post remains the top revenue earner in the country with a monthly collection of K18 billion.

Chalulu disclosed that the post records over 70 trucks and buses daily, carrying about 2 100 tonnes of goods.

The post MRA endeavours to counter smuggling first appeared on The Nation Online.

The post MRA endeavours to counter smuggling appeared first on The Nation Online.