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Burundi's tax revenues to rise 10 pct in 2015 -revenue board
January 22, 2015 / 3:01 PM / 3 years ago

Burundi's tax revenues to rise 10 pct in 2015 -revenue board

BUJUMBURA, Jan 22 (Reuters) - Aid-dependent Burundi could see its tax revenues rise 10.2 percent to 720.8 billion francs ($466.54 million) in 2015 from last year due to higher tax collection on consumption and improved anti-graft efforts, its revenue board said on Thursday.

The landlocked East African country of nearly 10 million people expects economic activity to increase as it holds elections, including a presidential vote on June 26.

“We predict this year there will be intense economic activities with the election period, and this will boost consumption and generate more tax revenues,” General Manager Domitien Ndihokubwayo told a news conference.

Just under half of Burundi’s planned 1.5 trillion franc ($970 million) budget for 2015 will be funded by international donors, according to a plan approved by parliament last month.

The government expects to receive grants worth 679.8 billion francs, down from 707.8 billion francs it received in 2014.

Ndihokubwayo also said a campaign against corruption would help to increase tax collection.

Burundi is struggling to fight corruption and boost tax revenues to reduce its heavy reliance on foreign aid.

To achieve that goal, it set up in 2010 a semi-autonomous revenue authority with the support from donors such as Britain and the World Bank, to help maximize the tax base and reform the taxation system.

The authority known as OBR collected 653.7 billion francs in 2014, up from a collection of 559.5 billion francs in 2013.

$1 = 1,545.0000 Burundi francs Reporting by Patrick Nduwimana; Editing by James Macharia

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