The Commissioner of Inland Revenue Mark Bell on Tuesday has announced the launch of Inland Revenue’s Tax Compliance Focus for 2013 to 2015.
He said that one of the primary objectives for Inland Revenue is to help taxpayers get it right so that they file their tax returns and pay the right amount of tax on time.
“It also ensures that most people do meet their tax obligations voluntarily or with help from Inland Revenue.”
However, Commissioner Bell said that all tax administrations face a degree of non-compliance in some areas, and Inland Revenue intends to focus on these areas over the next few years.
“The purpose of the Tax Compliance Focus document is to help Inland Revenue focus on those areas of non-compliance, whether it be unintentional or where people consciously choose to cheat the system and not meet their obligations,” Mr Bell explained.
The document sets out the specific tax risks which Inland Revenue will be focusing on over the next few years including:
• Outstanding tax debt and tax returns
• Tax evasion, with a particular focus on wholesalers, retailers, taxi and bus operators and those involved in the rental of commercial and residential properties
• Logging and Mining industries
The Commissioner also said that the intention behind making this document public is to help taxpayers understand what Inland Revenue will be focusing on.
Taxpayer’s who are not currently doing the right thing, including those with outstanding tax liabilities, will be approached by Inland Revenue, and where necessary, Inland Revenue will use the powers available to it to the fullest extent
This will include imposing the relevant penalties, which can be quite severe.
Mr Bell said that Inland Revenue understands that some people may be having difficulty complying with their tax obligations, and is happy to work with them by taking a realistic and flexible approach to help them meet their tax obligations.
“I encourage anyone having some difficulty meeting their tax obligations to contact us before we contact them,” Mr Bell said.
The Commissioner added that he will shortly be approaching a number of business and industry associations to present the Inland Revenue’s Tax Compliance document.
“It is in the best interests of every Solomon Islander that everyone manages their tax responsibilities honestly and effectively.
“If taxpayers don’t do this, then they are cheating their fellow Solomon Islanders. Inland Revenue will contact those people who are not doing the right thing, so if you are one of them, it is best to contact Inland Revenue before Inland Revenue contacts you.” Mr Bell added.
Inland Revenue’s Tax Compliance Focus document 2013-2015 will be available shortly on the Inland Revenue Division’s website: www.ird.gov.sb
Press Release, Government Communications Unit