Fiji curbs black economy by digital transformation program

0 Comment(s)Print E-mail Xinhua, September 18, 2019
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SUVA, Sept. 18 (Xinhua) -- The Fijian government's DigitalFiji initiative would help the Fiji Revenue and Customs Service (FRCS) deal with black economy, a Fijian government official said on Wednesday.

According to Fiji Broadcasting Corporation (FBC), FRCS Chief Executive Visvanath Das said Wednesday that unrecorded and untaxed economic activities will continue to be rife in countries like Fiji until the authorities digitally capture all financial transactions in the island nation.

"As long as there's cash dealing in the economy, that's exactly what black economy is all about. There is a tendency that there'll be revenue leakages and I think that's where we need to appreciate the broader picture initiative of the government in terms of Digitizing Fiji or DigitalFiji. And that'll help address all these issues," he said.

While some businesses are paying their dues, others continue to manipulate the system to get away with taxes, he said, adding that this distorts the level playing field for taxpayers.

Financial Intelligence Unit Director Razim Buksh said they're working with FRCS and other relevant stakeholders to curb this issue.

Buksh said they partnered with key agencies like FRCS, Fiji Police Force, and the Fiji Independent Commission against corruption.

They exchanged information with the three agencies on a daily basis and profiled people in terms of financial transactions, he added.

Buksh said while the Fiji Revenue and Customs Service is giving opportunities to Fijians to comply voluntarily, fines will be imposed on repeat offenders.

DigitalFIJI is the Fijian government's 4-year digital transformation program, which would implement a number of government applications, enhance the overall ICT infrastructure and develop capacity in digital transformation in the government.

The DigitalFiji program is in line with the Fijian government's 5 year and 20-year National Development Plan (NDP) which calls for the steady improvement of the quality and accessibility of government services. One of the key goals of DigitalFiji is to make more key government services available online through mobile applications for all Fijians. Enditem

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