MRA, Immigration join forces to enhance tax laws, permits compliance

The Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) and the Immigration and Citizenship Services have joined forces by signing a Memorundum of Understanding (MoU) that will be enabling the two government agencies to effectively ensure that all foreigners working in the country are complying with the requirements of the respective entities.

Malata and Medi exchanging the MoU: MRA and Immigration Department have interfaced their systems
namely Msonkho Online System and the e-Permits System.
MRA, Immigration Department to exchange information and increase clients’ compliance in their day to day operations.

With MoU on the integration of E-payment and Msonkho online system, MRA will be certain that foreign nationals are complying with tax laws whereas Immigration Department will be able to fast-truck permit renewal process resulting in improved service quality by eliminating delays associated with processing of Tax Clearance Certificate.

Msonkho Online, is an integrated system for tax administration for processing and administering all domestic taxes and other non-tax revenues and it enables taxpayers to register, file tax returns and pay taxes online.

And speaking during the signing ceremony at Msonkho House in Blantyre, MRA Director General Tom Grey Malata said the Authority is implementing numerous modernisation reforms to increase compliance and broaden the tax base.

Malata said with Msonkho online Malawian taxpayers will require a national ID to register and be issued with a Taxpayer Identification Number (TPIN).

“In the case of foreign nationals, identification for tax registration will be done using Permits which hereon will be issued by the Malawi Department of Immigration and Citizenship Services using their ePermits System. In this regard,  MRA and Immigration Department have seen it necessary to interface their systems, namely Msonkho Online System and the ePermits System,” said Malata.

MRA Director General further explained that the interface will also facilitate faster renewal of permits by Immigration after verifying the tax compliance status of the permit renewal applicant with MRA.

On his part, Director General of Immigration Department Masauko Medi said the integration of the systems will enhance efficiency and effectiveness in the delivery of services of both institution thereby creating an enabling business environment for investors.

Medi disclosed that the Immigration Department is still working on the E-Visa system where applicants will be able to apply, get feedback and make appropriate payments online.

He also said they are upgrading the passport issuance system and introducing the E-Passport system, thereby meeting the global practice of E-Passports.

“All these Immigration and Citizenship systems are complementing the already installed E-Permit system which will soon be integrated with Msonkho Online System and the MoU is part of the formalization.

“Technically,  the two systems will be complementing each other while the two institutions are executing their respective mandates.  The sharing of data as Malawi government agencies is the direction that we should take as a country integrating various systems for technological advancement, ” said Medi.

With MoU, MRA will be requesting Immigration Department permit file numbers and passport details attached to such particular permits for purposes of issuance of TPIN.

Likewise, the Immigration Department will be requesting MRA to validate Tax Clearance and Certificates submitted by permit applicants. These transactions will be done electronically using systems from both ends.

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The case of disappeared or unaccounted blank passports?