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URA Rolls Out Voluntary Disclosure Of Offshore Interests

Patrick Ocailap, the Deputy Secretary to the Treasury.

Uganda Revenue Authority is rolling out a Voluntary Disclosure Program (VDP), urging people with offshore incomes and assets to disclose their holdings.

The VDP is among the tax administration measures put in place by URA to ensure tax compliance and has been on for local taxpayers since 2014. It is designed to offer wealthy individuals a chance to declare any previously undeclared income and assets.

Patrick Ocailap, Deputy Secretary to the Treasury, says that URA’s move is a pivotal step toward achieving equitable revenue collection, bolstering domestic income, and broadening the country’s tax base.

Ocailap says that the VDP window allows taxpayers to reconcile their financial records with the URA before January 2024. He said that thereafter, financial institutions worldwide, including Uganda, will enforce the collection of this information.

He urged banks, investment managers, insurance companies, and their regulators to collaborate with the URA to ensure the smooth and effective implementation of the new law.

John Musinguzi, the URA Commissioner General, said that those who take advantage of the Voluntary Disclosure Program will receive a full waiver of penalties and interest on the tax paid before Uganda’s first automatic information exchange begins in September 2025.

The primary objective of the Exchange of Information program is to boost voluntary tax compliance by tackling tax evasion and other illicit financial flows while adhering to the international standards and obligations agreed upon in the tax information exchange agreements.

Musinguzi also added that Uganda is poised to strengthen its economic foundation and curb the outflow of untaxed wealth.

-URN

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