Mr Sayed-Khaiyum’s Statement at the Launching of the FIRCA Tax Portal

It gives me much pleasure to be here this morning.  It marks a very important milestone in FIRCA’S history but also generally for our country as a whole as  this launch signals the modernizing agenda generally of our country.
The modernizing agenda is not only to revamp the laws, amend the laws, introduce new laws that recognize the contemporary society that we live in, but also to bring about various efficiencies within our governmental systems and processes.

Various accounting firms will be able to access information on their clients in the comfort of their offices. As you know and as had been announced, the next 12 to 18 months there will be increased services available through this particular medium. Eventually, you will then be able to launch returns and various other details therefore minimizing your need to physically visit the offices. This creates efficiencies in itself and creates efficiencies for your businesses.

The other important aspect of course, is that it leads to accountability. It leads to accountability in terms of the officers of FIRCA and also in respect to the agents themselves because you have information that once lodged its there for everyone to see. It also means that information does not necessarily get lost. It also means that there are in-built efficiencies because if somebody is sick from work it does not mean that the next person who is there may be able to access that information.

All in all, it creates that environment that is not only conducive. If you are a tax agent and you are able to have efficiency vis-à-vis your client’s information and lodging of returns generally it creates that environment within Fiji itself, where we are seen as an efficient and a modern society. This blends in with other initiatives of Government as has been announced for example, next year we are going computerize the Companies Office and the Titles Office. This means that the various investors going to FTIB will know that there is a system in place in Fiji which creates efficiencies, which means lodgements can be made quickly, companies can be registered quickly and you can access your Titles and do searches from the comforts of your home.

I would like to once again congratulate the Board and FIRCA for this initiative that they have undertaken. I would say it has been a long time coming but the fact is, it is here now and I think we must ride on this wave of momentum that has been created by FIRCA and their team.

I congratulate them once again for that. I am sure there will be some teething problems initially and they will look forward to your support and your input. We need to work together as a team and indeed the nation to ensure that all these initiatives put in place will be for the benefit of all.

Thank you very much for being here and it gives me much pleasure to launch the portal now

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