TEMPO.CO, Jakarta - President Joko "Jokowi" Widodo's administration will require tax-payers to file their income taxes online. The regulations and mechanism of electronic taxation is currently being tested but will apply to the general public by 2017. "We are now starting with 45 big companies," said Tax Director-General Fuad Rahmany, following a ceremony commemorating the National Money Day in Jakarta. He expected that the policy will be applied comprehensively in two to three years time.
Fuad said that the plan to apply online tax system has been long in planning but was delayed because of the small number of registered tax-payers, yet the system is expected to minimize potential graft and leakages of state funds.
Experimental online taxation system is currently being applied to 45 big companies in order to monitor how the system works and to be alert for potential tax manipulation. "When tax-payers are linked to the system, they will comply with regulations," said Fuad.
Deputy Minister of Finance Mardiasmo, said that tax evasions will still be classified as a crime under the new system. In order to detect such violations, the ministry will collaborate with the police crime division and the Corruption Eradication Commission (KPK). "Basically we want to increase state revenues, from taxation, mining and dividends," said Mardiasmo.
President Jokowi has repeatedly said that the potential of generating revenues from taxes is huge. However, he added that the taxation system has not been applied optimally. In the past decade, tax revenues have been increasing by a mere 0.1 percent on average. "From 2005 to 2013, we have never been able to reach our targets," said Jokowi, during a limited cabinet meeting on Thursday, October 30, 2014.
The president said that some 24 million people are potentially taxable, but so far, only 17 million have been filing their tax obligations each year and even then, only 60 percent or around 10 million of the total number of tax-payers actually pay their taxes.
JAYADI SUPRIADIN, SUNDARI