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The Cabinet condemns the complicity observed at the level of the OBR in fraud on taxes and internal charges

ByWebmaster

Dec 15, 2023

BUJUMBURA December 12th (ABP) – As part of the campaign against fraud, an audit of certain companies producing juices and alcoholic beverages has been initiated, with the new system of electronic invoicing machines.

Irregularities were noted among the taxpayers analyzed, in particular the discrepancy between the prices appearing on the invoices sent to the OBR and the prices actually paid by customers indicates the press release from the Cabinet of November 6, 2023.

During the analysis of a Note on the campaign to combat fraud on internal taxes and fees, one of the 14 points on the agenda, it was noted that on average VAT is reduced by 62%. That means that the VAT collector returns to the treasury only 38% of the VAT collected during the sale of his goods. The note indicates the actions initiated or to be initiated towards the delinquent taxpayers, their tax advisors and the employees of the OBR.

The Cabinet appreciated the measures already taken to combat fraud, but noted that much remains to be done.

He particularly condemned the complicity at the OBR level in that fraud, and asked that the complicit employees be sanctioned. The Cabinet promised that an audit will be carried out on all taxpayers and that those at fault will be punished in addition to the reimbursement of what they owe to the public treasury.

The Cabinet also recommended the dismantling and repression of salary fraud at the level of the Ministry of Civil Service, Labor and Employment and at other structures operating on the budget of the ‘State.

The Cabinet also analyzed and adopted the project to support access to financing for imports of strategic products from the World Bank. According to the press release, the operation aims to revive the financing of imports.

Thus, a guarantee mechanism of 40 million US dollars will be provided to allow local commercial banks to open letters of credit to support the imports of private companies. The scope of application will be limited to the import of essential products (fertilizers and medicines). All banks will be eligible, provided they meet predefined criteria, which will be detailed in the project operations manual, according to the conclusions of the Board.

The Cabinet moreover, analyzed and approved the draft decree revising Decree No. 100/13 of January 12, 2016 authorizing the State of Burundi to participate in the capital of the Joint Company responsible for exploitation and maintenance of the multiplexing and distribution network of digital television signals. In accordance with the decree of January 12, 2016, the company STNB was created with 60% of the shares for the company StarTimes Network Technology Co.Ltd and 40% of the shares for the Burundian part.

Taking into account the fact that the contribution to industry had been overvalued, the renegotiation made it possible to achieve a shareholding of 45%, instead of 40% for the Burundian party and 55% for the Chinese party, instead of 60%. %.

The purpose of that draft decree was to comply with those changes by revising the decree authorizing the State of Burundi to participate in the share capital of STNB, in order to take into account the new distribution of shareholders. . The Council of Ministers made an observation to introduce a provision specifying that the terms of dividend sharing are determined in a contract signed by both parties.

The Council of Ministers also considered an Information Note on the signing of the interim agreement for the Electrification Program for Hilly Villages in Burundi with the company Virunga Power Holdings Ltd. According to the press release, that interim agreement allows the project to start, before the end of 2024, the construction phase of projects totaling approximately forty-five thousand (45,000) connections in a period of two years. It is also stipulated that the project has sufficient financial support which, once the State of Burundi and the partner work together, will allow Burundi to achieve the electricity access rate of more than 70% in 2030”. After analysis and debate, the Council of Ministers approved the signing of that interim agreement.

The Cabinet also analyzed and approved the draft joint ministerial order establishing the terms of application of Decree No. 100/261 of November 18, 2021 establishing the statutes of Veterans.

In the miscellaneous, “the President of the Republic informed the Cabinet of Ministers of the end of the mission of the troops of the East African Community, in the Democratic Republic of Congo, and that the continuation will be done at the bilateral level”, indicates the same Press release.