WORKS, Transport and Communications Minister, Prof Makame Mbarawa has issued a one-month ultimatum to traders at Julius Nyerere International Airport to pay property tax as per their contractual requirements.
Prof Mbarawa issued the directives yesterday during a meeting with the traders to discuss various challenges facing the group and chart out the way forward in addressing them in order to provide quality services.
“It is mandatory for you to pay property tax, thus you are required to clear the payment by end of next month… the taxes are vital for the government to continue improving the country’s airports and other services,” Prof Mbarawa insisted.
Prof Mbarawa, also directed management of Tanzania Airports Authority (TAA) to review all leasing contracts to match market value. He called upon traders to cope with technological changes in order to compete in local and international markets.
The Minister added that the government will continue to create friendly business environment to them for their businesses to benefit the country as well. Meanwhile, Prof Mbarawa has inspected passengers’ departure lounge and promised that the government will institute a short plan to enable passengers to spend less time when filling exit forms.
“The government will collaborate with all institutions providing services at this airport so that we can set out a special plan that will fast track the services to meet the needs of our customers,” he said.
TAA acting Director General, Salim Msangi said that the authority has gone through all the contracts of traders at the airport and it is currently making follow ups on all debts in order to improve services.
Mr Msangi cautioned that legal action will be taken against traders who will fail to clear their debts. Last month, the government announced that it collected 32.5bn/- from 30 towns, cities and municipal councils throughout the country.
The government has met its target collection of 58bn/- in 2016/17 FY by 56 per cent; the Ministry of Finance and Planning reveals that for 2015/16 in the same towns, cities and municipal councils its collections stood at 28.3bn/-.
Finance and Planning Minister, Dr Philip Mpango told reporters that the taxman officially started collecting Property Tax in October 2016, initially targeting 30 out of the 183 local government authorities.
“As we have extended the deadline to collect property tax to July 31, this year, it is not easy to provide appropriate amount collected nationwide as the exercise is still going on, for the time being the figures available are only for those 30 local authorities,” he said.