Ndola chamber says tax clearance conditions frustrating small companies out of business


Ndola District Chamber of Commerce and Industry boss, Joseph Malisawa, has said that conditions attached to getting Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) tax clearance as compliance measures were frustrating companies out of business.

The government through the ZRA had issued new instructions to the effect that starting from January 1, 2024 companies with tax arrears would not be given tax clearance certificates until they clear balances.

Malisawa said this was spelling doom to local enterprises with low capital base.

He argued in Kitwe on Friday that ZRA should have a way of collecting taxes from defaulters rather than denying them opportunities to do business.

Read more: compulsory-pre-clearance-of-commercial-goods-to-be-effective-may-1-zra

Malisawa gave a scenario where a construction company from Ndola lost a potential US$2 million tender on account of not having a tax clearance certificate.

“We need to introspect on this measure which is killing businesses. I have been informed that one of our members at the Ndola Chamber has just lost a US$2 million tender on account of not having a tax clearance certificate. This is a reality,” he said.

Malisawa said the company was now sending employees away as a mitigation measure to save the business from total collapse.

However, Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) acting commissioner, Richard Kapasa, advised companies with cash flow challenges should utilise the time to leverage the agreement window so that they might be given temporal tax clearance to access businesses.

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