(Business in Cameroon) - Between 2010 and 2022, tax revenue in Cameroon grew to CFA2,384 billion (expectation for the year) from CFA992 billion. This is an increase of 140%, or CFA1,392 billion over the period.
The Head of the General Directorate of Taxes, Modeste Mopa Fatoing, explained that this performance was achieved thanks to the reforms implemented within the tax administration over at least the past decade. They revolved around “optimizing the collection of taxes, particularly through the dematerialization of procedures, from the declaration to the payment,” he said yesterday in Douala, during consultations with economic operators as part of the preparation of the 2023 state budget.
In June, while speaking at the budget coordination meeting, Modeste Mopa Fatoing boasted that “today, everything is completely done online at the level of large, medium, even small and micro enterprises in the regional capitals. It is possible to register with a mobile phone or computer and pay the tax without going to the tax authorities. There is no longer a cashier at the tax office. Even tax certificates are now obtained online”.
Widening the tax base
One of the best outcomes of digitalization is that the time spent by the taxpayer in meeting his tax obligations has dropped from more than 600 hours per year to less than 20 hours, we learned. This is a reduction of over 96%. Moreover, it has helped reduce fraud since there is no more physical contact between tax officials and taxpayers.
In FY2021, tax authorities said they collected CFA1.10 billion via mobile money, almost half of the CFA25 billion paid via banks. They also authorized companies to collect certain taxes before transferring them to the DGI (airport tax collected by airlines, car tax collected by insurance companies ..., ed). New taxes have also been introduced to expand the tax base. An example is a tax on electronic money transfers introduced in the 2022 finance law. This tax is expected to bring in around CFA20 billion in additional revenue this year, according to DGI projections.
Written by: Brice R. Mbodiam
Translated from French by Firmine AIZAN