The federal government on Thrsday launched its Voluntary Asset and Income Declaration Scheme (VAIDS) to broaden the country’s tax base and offer incentives for tax evaders.
According to the ministry of finance, the tax amnesty will run for the next nine months, effective from July 1, 2017.
From July 1 to December 31, 2017, the government is offering “waiver of interest and penalty, no prosecution of tax offences and no tax audit” to all tax evaders who declare their “hidden assets”.
From January 1 to March 31, there will only be “waiver of penalty, no prosecution of tax offences and no tax audit”.
“We are doing two things today: we are sending a clear signal to tax evaders in our country that the party is over,” the ministry of finance said via a statement.
“We’re also calling on these evaders to do the right thing and rapidly come clean for the good of their country or face the full consequences of the law. This window of opportunity will never be offered again.”
The proceeds of this scheme will not disappear. They will be invested in key infrastructure projects and for clearance of pension arrears.