The African Development Bank (ADB) has poured a total of US$ 10.4 million towards the Tax and Accountability Enhancement Project (TAEP) to be implemented by the government of Zimbabwe to strengthen revenue collection and accountability in the management of public funds.
The project is targeting three institutions, the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (ZIMRA), Parliament of Zimbabwe and Auditor General’s Office who will get US$ 8.1 million, US$ 2.9 million and US$ 0.6 million respectively.
Speaking at the signing ceremony of the grant protocol agreement in Harare this morning, Finance and Economic Development Minister, Mthuli Ncube said the project will strengthen the transparency, accountability and oversight mandate of the three institutions in line with the Transitional Stabilization Program which prioritizes fiscal consolidation.
“This is to support ZIMRA, Parliament and the Auditor General’s Office for the following components; Tax and revenue management system modernization US$ 8.1 million, Improving capacity of the oversight function of parliament and external audit US$ 2.9 million and project management including monitoring and evaluation activities US$0.6 million. On its part, Government will contribute $ 1.1 million,” he said.
Under this project, ZIMRA is set to build ICTs capacity towards tax administration and also switch over to a more efficient and automated Tax and Revenue Management System (TARMS).
This comes at a time government is seized with widening its revenue collection base while consolidating current channels by plugging leakages within its systems.
“(TARMS) It will also enable ZIMRA to receive critical third party data from other stakeholders like ZIMSTATS, Registrar of Companies, banks and others who will provide key data for compliance management,” ZIMRA Commissioner General, Faith Mazani said.
ADB Zimbabwe country manager, Damon Kitabire said the project will strengthen previous projects the bank has conducted in the country such as debt management and introduction of the cargo tracking system.
“We believe this will enhance domestic revenue, tax accountability and strengthening institutionbal capacity and efficiency in tax administration. It will also strengthen Parliament in implementing its oversight role,” Kitabire said.
The cash injection has been applauded particularly at a time Parliament through its various thematic portfolio committees and the Auditor General’s Office have been unearthing cases of gross mismanagement of public funds with limited resources at their disposal.