International IDEA empowers local governments towards stronger tax systems in Mozambique
In partnership with the National Association of Municipalities in Mozambique (ANAMM), International IDEA trained 20 municipal finance staff from eight municipalities on the strengthening of local tax collection.
The training is a part of the "Strengthening of Democracy in Mozambique" Programme, funded by the EU and Austria, and implemented by International IDEA in partnership with several co-implementing partners. The programme is a five-year project to last from April 2018 to August 2023.
Alongside ANAMM, International IDEA assisted in the conception of the training’s curriculum, advised on the facilitators and target group, as well as participated in the event that took place in Tete City from 26 to 28 June.
Through the curriculum, the training aimed to empower technical staff’s understanding of the tax system and identify best practices that may improve the amount of revenue collected by local municipalities.
Currently, local governments in Mozambique lack sufficient financial resources to undertake their development programmes and service delivery responsibilities, for which they largely depend on transfers from the central government. An assessment made by ANAMM concluded that the main cause of this low capacity is the hurdle of raising own-source revenue, specifically through local taxation.
Therefore, this training sought to assist municipalities in: creating and/or strengthening their Tax Units; developing tax registers and revenue control systems; establishing tax collection enforcement processes; and envisioning Municipal Urban Buildings Evaluation Committees, a critical institution for one type of municipal tax assessment.
It also sought to address daily challenges in the collection of taxes from citizens. Activities focused on how to develop a tax register, how to deal with taxes that citizens decide to pay in neighboring municipalities and how to retrieve taxes collected by third-party entities.
At the end of the training, each municipality prepared an action plan to follow up on the learnings from the workshop.
ANAMM will continue to promote dialogue among the municipalities on this subject as well as between municipalities and the Mozambican Tax Authority. International IDEA’s "Strengthening of Democracy in Mozambique" Programme Team will continue to provide support in these critical conversations.