Ministry of Finance Permanent Secretary says the proposal by Finance Minister, Margaret Mwanakatwe to re-introduce non-refundable sales tax is not aimed at making life difficult for the business community but to remove inconsistencies which have been identified in the payments of the Value Added Tax (VAT).
Dr. Emmanuel Pamo said government is paying more than it collected through VAT adding that, there are situations where exporters after getting VAT refunds are coming to the market to buy foreign exchange instead of providing it.
He said this is not the first time sales tax is being introduced in the country but that it was there in the 1990s.
The Permanent Secretary said government will ensure that the debt deficit is limited to 6.5 percent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) as a way of curtailing inconsistencies in the accumulation of debt.
Dr .Pamo said during a 2019 budget breakfast meeting organised by Price Water House Coopers (PWC) in Ndola yesterday.
And Dr. Pamo said government has increased funding to key sectors such as health, education and social protection contrary to what some sections of society are saying.
He was responding to some concerns by various stakeholders who wanted to know why the state has increased funding to the Ministry of Defence and Public Order adding that, the proposal to do away with VAT should seriously be looked into.
Ministry of Finance last Friday unveiled the 2019 national budget amounting to K 86.8 Billion.