Rungwe District Commissioner Julius Chalya sounded the warning when speaking at the official launch of the exercise to hand over IDs for small-scale traders of Rungwe and Busekelo councils.
He said: “As government, we’re making a close follow-up to ensure that only eligible traders get the IDs.”
According to him, the government is now collecting particulars from small-scale traders in the district to give IDs to those who meet the criteria thus enable them conduct their business legally and contribute in the country development.
For his part, Rungwe district executive director, Loema Peter said that over 600 petty traders have been identified and registered to get the IDs.
“The ID cards will be renewable annually and are available at a price of 20,000/-. They are provided to anyone running a business with a maximum profit turnaround of 4 million/- as directed by President John Magufuli,” he noted.
Speaking some of the trades commended the government’s initiative as saying that it would also rescue them from multi-levies they were previously paying but also play a vital role in the country’s development.
“With these IDs, we hope that we can now conduct our businesses freely because we will be recognized as taxpayers,” said Zuberi Kwasale, a petty trader in the area.
Claudis Mwakyambala, on his side said that for a very long time, small-scale entrepreneurs were being treated as people cannot contribute anything in the country’s developments with officials accumulating multi-levies from them.
Late last year, President Magufuli launched the programme to provide vendors and small-scale entrepreneurs with special taxpayer ID cards which he printed in efforts to expand tax base in the country.
When handing over the cards to regional commissioners, he charged the leaders to ensure proper distribution of the cards.
The ID cards will be renewable annually and are available at a price of 20,000/-. Anyone running a business with a maximum profit turnaround of 4 million/- is eligible to have one.
According to Magufuli, more than 6,000 ID cards have been printed to start with and will be distributed according to feedback on the exact needs of each region.
He noted that Tanzania’s current tax base stands at just 12.8 per cent against a population of over 50 million, compared to Kenya which has an18.5 percent tax base against a population of 40 million.