Developing a tax amnesty model for Zambia to enhance tax payments.

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Simuchile, Olias Shula
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The University of Zambia
Tax is one of the biggest sources of revenue in any Country. However, because delinquent taxpayers still exist, there are usually large sums of uncollected revenues, in terms of principal tax and subsequent penalties and interest accrued because of either not filing returns on time or not paying the tax on time. Tax Amnesty is a one-time offer to settle an outstanding tax debt relating to previous tax periods, for an amount that is less than the current debt, as penalties and interests are waived. The Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) implemented Tax Amnesty for a period prior to 1st March 2017.The aim of this study was to develop a tax amnesty model for Zambia to enhance tax payments. The study used descriptive research design deploying a mixed method approach (Qualitative & Qualitative). A total number of 68 tax consultants were the respondents with two (02) being key informants. The selection of the respondents was purposive in nature owing their availability and demonstrated expert knowledge. Data was collected using Questionnaires and in-depth interviews. Quantitative data were analyzed using Statistic Package for Social Sciences (SPSS). Descriptive statistics applying the composite mean and chi square to test hypotheses and inferences. Qualitative data analysis used thematic analysis following a constant comparison method. The results revealed that although there was a 50% collection of the tax out of the targeted K8 billion, there was also an increase in the Tax Debt owing to the in accurate database and knowledge gap of the taxpayers on the tax amnesty policy. From the findings, the results showed that the period of the Tax amnesty should not be less than three (3) months, but not more than one (1) year as 95.7% of the respondents were of the view that the implementation of the Tax amnesty should have a sufficient time to file the unfilled returns but should be followed by strict enforcement through the strengthening of the Tax system. It was also noted that 2017 tax amnesty model in Zambia had poor integration of time range of tax amnesty which led to the extensions of amnesty twice. Furthermore, the results showed the proposed Tax Amnesty model which should include the following identified major variables such as ZRA resolving Taxpayer Audit issues, visitation by Tax officers to educate the Taxpayers, allowing a sufficient time to pay at least not less than 3 months but not more than 1 year and an accurate database. On the Overall, this model was correctly specific for the Zambian Tax amnesty. The study has recommended, based on the findings that: There is need to improve the accuracy of Tax database, through engagement of a third party who could independently verify the details of the taxpayers to ensure accuracy of the data. There should be increased knowledge of the Taxpayers through continuous education about tax amnesty and other tax policies. Keywords: Tax Amnesty Model, Tax revenue, Tax amnesty
Master Degree in Business Administration and Finance.
Tax amnesty.