JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The system will be implemented on a phased basis, beginning on March 1, 2014.
  • The objective of the new system is to allow persons to submit their tax returns easier, simpler and on time.
  • The sensitisation programme began last month and will continue into next year.

Tax Administration Jamaica (TAJ) has been stepping up its sensitisation campaign as it gets ready to introduce the mandatory e-filing of tax returns.

The system will be implemented on a phased basis, beginning on March 1, 2014 for certain category of persons.

Senior Client Relationship Manager, Corporate Services, at the TAJ, Gerrard Edman, said the objective of the new system is to allow persons to submit their tax returns easier, simpler and on time. It will also assist the TAJ to develop a more efficient tax system.

Mr. Edman was addressing a Jamaica Exporters’ Association (JEA) Breakfast Forum on November 19, at the Association’s Winchester Road headquarters in St. Andrew, where he provided information on the electronic filing process.

He informed that the sensitisation programme began last month and will continue into next year when the mandatory filing will be implemented. He urged persons to get online now.

“If it is that persons are not on-line as yet, I strongly urge and recommend that (you do so). Don’t wait until March 1 to get your thing sorted out. It is a very simple process and there are inherent benefits to be derived from utilising the system now. On-site registration is available if needed, so you can always call up customer care and make that request or if you have a client relationship manager you can also contact that manager for a one and one type of assistance,” he advised.

Mr. Edman told the exporters that the e-filing system saves on cost and time in waiting at the tax office. “It provides that level of flexibility where persons can literally be anywhere in the world and be tax compliant. Distance is no longer a barrier,” he pointed out.

He also informed that the system allows clients to file and pay anytime; to enter information electronically rather than manually, which helps to fast-track the processing of certain services; validate the data entered at the point of input thus eliminating discrepancies; and allow the client to scan and upload documents.

Under Phase One of the e-filing system, all taxpayers with annual turnover greater than or equal to $500 million are to e-file General Consumption Tax/Special Consumption Tax (GCT/SCT) Returns, Income Tax Returns, Employers Annual Returns (S02), and Employers Monthly statutory declarations (SO1) via the Jamaica Tax Portal at www.jamaicatax-online.gov.jm.

Taxpayers with GCT refund returns will also be required to e-file, as well as all employers with 20 or more employees, who will be required to e-file SO2 and SO1 declarations.

Mr. Edman said that large taxpayers are still encouraged to use the direct banking facility for payment.

JEA President, Andrew Collins, in the meantime, called on the Government and its agencies to join forces with the JEA “to become Jamaica’s exports sales force”.

“We continue to urge the Government to allocate the necessary resources for the implementation of outstanding initiatives under the National Export Strategy, which, if given the requisite support, is an ideal framework for developing and growing our exports,” he said.

The JEA President also repeated the call for greater urgency in creating an environment that facilitates exports by reducing bureaucracy, improving transactional times, and fostering growth of new and existing firms.

The JEA forum was held under the theme: ‘Ensuring Infrastructural Development to Support Export Growth.’