A sound revenue system is necessary to create jobs and space for credible investments in Liberia, British Ambassador to Liberia, David Belgrove, stated on Wednesday, February 10, 2016 on a working visit to the Liberia Revenue Authority (LRA).
Applauding progress made by LRA Commissioner General Elfrieda Stewart Tamba, Ambassador Belgrove underscored the importance of taxation and a sound revenue system in development.
“I like to congratulate you on the progress the LRA is making in a relatively short time. I am very impressed with the level of work the LRA is doing in Liberia,” Ambassador Belgrove told Commissioner General Tamba. He also noted that his experience suggests that the level of tax compliance in Liberia is very low.
The Commissioner General, along with the LRA’s senior management team, briefed Ambassador Belgrove on the work, progress, challenges and prospects of the authority, noting that Team LRA remains explicitly committed to improving revenue administration in the country.
In her presentation, Commissioner General Tamba presented a profile of the authority, including details of its ambitious Five-Year Corporate Strategic Plan, its partnerships with donors and development partners, and its revenue collection performance in the current fiscal year (FY 2015/2016).
Commissioner General Tamba said the LRA continues to face challenges in effectively collecting revenue in Liberia because revenue administration is hampered by lack of modern administration systems such as e-filing, e-payment, and automated tax registers. Also identified are: inadequate funding; weak integrated management system; low level of technical and human capacities; poor infrastructure, especially in rural tax administration; corruption in the revenue system, as well as low level of tax consciousness; and compliance as major challenges the LRA is defying.
The Commissioner General and senior management team later took Ambassador Belgrove on a guided tour of the LRA banking hall, the Professional Ethics Division, the Taxpayer Service Center, and the MIS Data Center.