By Ruth Ngwenya, HARARE, March 31 (The Source) – Zimbabwe’s tax agency has moved to tax farmers after directing the tobacco industry regulator to withhold 10 percent of the money payable to suppliers without valid tax clearance certificates.
In a letter directed to Tobacco Industry Marketing Board (TIMB) and seen by The Source, the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority (Zimra), said the instruction was in line with section 80(2) of the Income Tax Chapter 23:06 which states that: “subject to this section, unless a payee furnishes the paying officer with a tax clearance certificate, the paying officer shall withhold 10 percent of each amount payable to the payee under the contract concerned and shall remit each amount so withheld to the commissioner on or before the 10th day of the month following that in which the payment was made.”
The tax agency also instructed the TIMB to issue withholding tax certificates to the suppliers that do not have valid tax clearance certificates.
TIMB and the central bank recently said that Individual small-scale farmers will be able to withdraw cash of up to $1,000 from their first tobacco sale and a maximum of up to $500 for subsequent sales under the 2017 selling season.
According to latest TIMB figures as of 30 March, 12 days since the opening of selling season, tobacco sales are up 38,9 percent to 17,9 million kilogrammes compared to 12,9 million kg sold during the same period last year.
Under auction, 3,8 million kg worth $9,6 million have been sold, while 14,1 million kg valued at $37,1 million was sold to contract buyers.
Tobacco output for 2016/17 season is expected to be around 205 million kgs.