Voluntary disclosure in respect of Customs and Excise offences

The Voluntary Disclosure Programme is running between July 2018 and December 2018 and Zimra has already recorded a number of varying offences. It is against this backdrop that the Authority is encouraging individuals who have either knowingly or unwittingly committed or omitted acts that are against the provisions of the Customs and Excise Act to voluntarily disclose such acts.

Common offences under

Customs and Excise Act

Wrong use of Customs Procedure Code

Customs Procedure Codes (CPC) are designed to enable importers to distinguish their importations for purposes of benefiting from specific rebates and suspensions. Wrong usage of CPC to evade or suppress duty and or VAT is an offence. For example, a motor vehicle which was supposed to pay duty on importation was cleared under disability suspension.

Any such irregularities can be formalised through taking advantage of the Voluntary Disclosure facility. Where a disclosure is made in respect of such irregularities duties become payable without the ordinary accompanying penalties and/or prosecution.

Undervaluation

There has been detection of cases of importations that were made using values that are less than the price actually paid or payable for the subject goods.

Some of the instances include importations made using false invoices or making false representations and forgery that lowers the values of the imported goods. Zimra will waive penalties and /or prosecution of the offenders if the importer voluntarily disclose such acts.

Incorrect tariff classification

Importers may have knowingly or unknowingly used incorrect tariff classifications resulting in underpayment of duties. Such under payments can be regularised through using the Voluntary Disclosure    Programme.

Any fines which would have been payable due to the incorrect tariff classification will be waived and only the duty, and interest on the duty, calculated at 10 percent per annum will be payable.

False claim of origin

There are cases where importers falsely or unknowingly used falsified Certificates of Origin to unduly clear goods under preferential treatment. The goods could have been falsely entered as originating in trading blocs such as the Sadc, Comesa, EU and other bilateral agreements entered with countries such as Botswana, South Africa, Mozambique and Malawi.

The on-going Voluntary Disclosure Programme guarantees waiver of penalties and prosecutions of persons in respect of such incorrect declarations. The duty due and interest on the duty will however remain payable.

Other offences

Other offences Other offences include the production of alcoholic beverages that are subject to Excise duty without being as an Excise Manufacturer.

These irregularities qualify for waiver of penalties if the importers and Excise Manufacturers voluntarily disclosure subject transactions.

For more information, please approach your nearest Zimra office.

Disclaimer: This article was compiled by the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority for information purposes only. Zimra shall not accept responsibility for loss or damage arising from use of material in this article and no liability will attach to the Zimbabwe Revenue Authority.

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