WITHHOLDING tax on rentals is not new and the Zambia Revenue Authority (ZRA) is happy that the response so far has been positive, says commissioner general Berlin Msiska.
Mr Msiska said the usage of text messages to clients had produced the desired results as many people had responded positively.
In an interview Mr Msiska said many people had shown interest in registering for tax rentals ever since ZRA started using the short messaging service (SMS) to reach out to its clients.
“People have come forward to register but what I need to emphasize is that the withholding tax on rentals is not new, it has been there for a number for years,” he said.
He said the new strategy despite having brought intense debate from the public enabled the authority to reach out to many people countrywide.
Mr Msiska said it was unfortunate that the new strategy was received with mixed feeling among the public and treated like it as a new way of obtaining tax and yet the concept had been in existence for many years.
“Perhaps what brought up a lot of debate was our publicity strategy because this time we chose to use text message than the traditional approach of advertising in the media,
Meanwhile, Mr Msiska said he was happy with Government’s decision of restoring the fiscal discipline in the 2016 national budget.
Mr Msiska said it was impressive to see how bold finance Minister Alexander Chikwanda was when presenting the national budget in parliament.
“First of all, the minister was very clear in his budget in terms of how he wanted to balance the budget. Coming out of his budget, the minister was also clear that he would like to restore fiscal discipline in managing his budget for next year,” he said.