Sierra Leone Business: NRA Takes Concrete steps to boost operations

In a bid to actualize President Bio’s pledge of increasing domestic revenue to 20% of gross domestic product by 2023, the National Revenue Authority (NRA) has embarked on series of activities geared towards making the commitment a reality. Practical and concrete steps have been taken within the institution to breathe life into words, and actualize the president’s dream. The digital revolution which has swept the world in the last two decades leaving societies cashless but moneyed, is breezing across the west coast of Africa. The NRA which is the body saddled with the responsibility of collecting revenue, streamlining and mainstreaming revenue mobilization has begun taking tangible steps to enhance its operational structures and processes. Three fundamental reforms have commenced already in the NRA that will in the medium and long-term bolster revenue generation and increase public confidence in the institution. The ASYCUDA World, the Electronic Cash Register (ECR) and the Integrated Tax Administration System (ITAS) have been introduced with some already on test run, whilst other components will commence soonest as contracts have been awarded for their operations. The ASYCUDA World which was launched some months back, is a web-based program that allows businessmen to start their transaction documents with the NRA from any part of the world and at any time. It eases the burden on particularly importers who buy goods from different parts of the world, paving way for them to check the custom duties for their goods and initiate engagement with the NRA as long as there is connectivity where they are. ASYCUDA World is being implemented with the intent of minimizing the cost of doing business both on the part of the businessmen and customs officials. It also significantly reduces clearance time of goods on the part of the trader thereby enhancing the business climate. It is more convenient for importers since they can start processing their importation processes from any part of the world as long as they have internet connection and other equipment to upload, attach and submit commercial documents electronically.

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