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JIS News

Story Highlights

  • The Tax Administration Jamaica (TAJ), by leveraging the use of social media to engage the public, has been boosting its effectiveness and creating a culture of voluntary compliance.
  • Communications officer, Leighton Beckles, said that through emphasis on building its presence on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter, the agency has been significantly impacting the quality service it offers and its ability to educate the public and foster greater tax compliance.
  • He informed that the TAJ is now rolling out its YouTube account and Instagram profile, which will augment the approximately 5,000 combined followers from Facebook and Twitter.

The Tax Administration Jamaica (TAJ), by leveraging the use of social media to engage the public, has been boosting its effectiveness and creating a culture of voluntary compliance.

Communications officer, Leighton Beckles, said that through emphasis on building its presence on social networking sites such as Facebook and Twitter, the agency has been significantly impacting the quality service it offers and its ability to educate the public and foster greater tax compliance.

He informed that the TAJ is now rolling out its YouTube account and Instagram profile, which will augment the approximately 5,000 combined followers from Facebook and Twitter.

“The Tax Administration Jamaica does recognise that the environment is very fluid and we, like any other entity, are competing for that dollar from the taxpayer, so it means that we want to put out more and we are doing that through (social media) platforms,” Mr. Beckles said in an interview with JIS News.

He said the heavy use of social media has been very impactful, as persons are able to get useful information in a short time.

“It improves education overall and there is a greater awareness about tax obligations, about rights and about responsibilities, and that dovetails into persons understanding and when persons do understand why it is important to pay taxes and how it impacts them, then you do find that they will move towards becoming voluntarily compliant,” he pointed out.

Increased voluntary compliance, he said, fosters a taxpaying economy where people “go about the business of paying their fair share without having to be coerced into doing it.”

Mr. Beckles added that this saves the agency resources that would otherwise be used to carry out enforcement activities.

“It makes for a much better environment and economy because taxes are the backbone of what this economy is made up of,” he pointed out.

He noted that the use of the social media networks also serves to supplement the customer care lines, which can sometimes become overwhelmed.