Mnangagwa's govt cashes in big on fuel excise duty

Mnangagwa's govt cashes in big on fuel excise duty
Published: 02 May 2019
THE Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra) says exercise duty collections more than doubled during the first quarter of 2019 compared to the same period last year after government hiked duty for fuel in January.

On January 13, government ordered an increase on exercise duty for fuel, which resulted in a 150 percent increase in prices for fuel that triggered country-wide protests.

Zimra said exercise duty collections amounted to $565,65 million against a target of $242,19 million, which translated to a positive variance of 133,56 percent.

"Excise duty collections increased by 142,44 percent from $233,32 million realised in the first quarter of 2018," the national tax collector said in its revenue performance report for the quarter ended March 31, 2019.

"The performance of the revenue head is attributed to an increase in the duty rate and demand and supply of diesel and petrol."

Zimra indicated that diesel imports increased by 9,10 percent during the quarter under review from 208,86 million litres supplied in the first quarter of 2018 to 227,86 million litres.

"Similarly, petrol imports increased by 11,19 percent from 123,67 million litres in the first half of 2018 to 137,51 million litres," the organisation said.

This also comes as the country's demand for fuel has generally been on the rise. Zimra said Zimbabwe imported 1,63 billion litres of petrol and diesel in 2018, a 24 percent increase on the previous year.

The tax collector has previously attributed the increased fuel demand to cross-border motorists and truckers who took advantage of prices in Zimbabwe, which were for a while the lowest in the region in real United States dollar terms.

Government cited this rationale in its fuel price hike in January. The continued increase in demand for fuel, however, seems to suggest that there was not much in this reasoning.

Meanwhile, Zimra said gross customs duty collections amounted to $91,52 million which translated to a negative variance of 11,81 percent against the target of $10,78 million.

The tax authority said this was caused mostly by a drop in the importation of cars after recent changes to duty policies.

"Though import volumes grew, collections from import duties were negatively impacted by the charging of duty in foreign currency which saw a drop in imports like cars," Zimra said.
- dailynews
Tags: Mnangagwa,


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