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Foreigners are having crème de la crème in Namibia, says Amadhila

Foreigners are having crème de la crème in Namibia, says Amadhila

Maria David

NAMIBIA has become a tax haven for foreigners as they don’t even pay any tax. They are, thereby, creating a problem.

That is the view of the leadership of the Namibia Local Business Association (NALOBA) who met representatives of the Namibia Revenue Agency (NamRA).

NALOBA’s vice president Peter Amadhila said it is NamRA’s duty to ensure that all foreign-owned businesses pay tax.

“They were supposed to pay more tax than local businesses. However, foreigners are having a cremè da la cremè while local business owners suffer,” he said.

Amadhila who was speaking at Ongwediva during a consultative meeting with NamRA at Ongwediva on Thursday, said that his Association understands and knows the benefits of paying tax, but there should be fairness.

Amadhila also demanded that NamRA provide NALOBA with the database with all foreign-owned businesses and also indicate to them how taxes were collected from foreign-owned businesses.

“All foreigners should register their businesses with NamRA. Those not registered should cease operating with immediate effect. Having foreign-owned companies that do not pay tax is unfair and discourages local businesses.
Amadhila stated further that business people want to pay tax, but many were negatively affected by the outbreak of the coronavirus pandemic.
“The Covid-19 pandemic has negatively affected all of us. Many businesses were liquidated and closed down,” he said, adding that NamRA should waive interest 100%, waive penalties 100%, reduce the capital tax amount by 70% and extend the period of payment.

Amadhila urged NamRA to ensure that foreign-owned businesses employ local bookkeepers and accountants because many of them do cook their books to avoid paying tax.

NamRA Commissioner Sam Shivute told the gathering that they were pleased to hear that local business people want to abide by taxation laws.
Shivute then reminded the business people that tax payment is important to ensure service delivery by government.

“We are however faced with tax morality in Namibia which is very low,” he said, adding that individual tax is what is currently holding the country and not corporate companies.
“Everyone is supposed to pay tax and we want everyone to pay their tax. We will make sure that people settle their due,” he stressed.

On the issue of NALOBA requesting database for foreign-owned businesses, Shivute indicated that it will be illegal to issue the database and they can be sued by individuals.

He also urged business owners to be careful of their bookkeepers and know what they are doing as they can cook up the books.

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