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Blog Archive


Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Tax Payments Made Easy- iTax by KRA

On Friday KRA and UBA gave us a sneak preview of the new online tax portal dubbed i-Tax. As explained by the Commissioner of Domestic Tax, Alice Owour, i-Tax is the latest iteration of the ITMS that we all love to hate. i-Tax which has been in pilot phase for some months now with a few medium and large taxpayers is scheduled to go-live in July 2013.

The major feature of i-Tax is the ability to facilitate both e-filing and e-payment. Another feature I like is that you can now upload simple Excel files, doing away with the cumbersome TSW (Taxpayer Software) application previously used to generate upload files. The upload process now has validation and when you make a mistake it churns out error descriptions that actually make sense (anyone who has tried to update something on ITMS knows what I'm talking about). Withholding tax certificates are auto-generated and emailed to the taxpayer as soon as payment is made. Taxpayers can now access their ledger directly and check payment status at will. 

At the moment the e-payment process is not seamless, because one first has to e-file and generate pay in slip which has a unique reference number. The pay in slip then has to be presented to a KRA collection bank for payment, which is where UBA comes in. UBA is one of the first collection banks to pilot the e-payments collections and has built an online portal that enables their customers to log in and pay their taxes directly to their tax account using the unique pay in slip number.

In a nutshell KRA is trying to make tax payment easier, though it is clear that i-Tax also has another deeper motive of widening the net by collecting additional taxpayer information. For entrepreneurs, there is also a genuine opportunity to incorporate multiple online and mobile payment options to fund i-Tax payments, though at this point it looks like the link will be with a collection bank and not directly to KRA as earlier hinted.


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