Tanzania: E-Business Licenses in Offing

THE Business Registration and Licensing Agency (BRELA) will soon start issuing business licences electronically in efforts to curb corruptions facilitated by face-to-face issuance of the service.

It was observed that some unscrupulous officials were capitalising on face-to-face provision of the licences to solicit money from businesspeople, thus denying revenue to the government.

BRELA Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Godfrey Nyaisa, revealed the new development here yesterday when opening a five-day capacity building training to business officers drawn from three regions of Dodoma, Singida and Morogoro.

The training focused on taking participants through the Business Licence Act so that they could get accustomed to their obligations enshrined in the legislation as well as knowing their boundaries on the discretionary powers bestowed on them.

According to Mr Nyaisa, there were a few officials within District Councils who were forging receipt books to mint cash from businesspeople who are conducting their activities illegally.

“Therefore, by coming up with e-licensing, we will avoid direct contacts between business officers and their clients and with paperless process in issuance of licences we will equally be able to get rid of bribery,” he stated.

In another development, the BRELA Chief Executive said plans were afoot to establish trade and investment departments in all 184 District Town, Municipal and City Councils in order to give business officers full autonomy to manage businesspeople in their duty stations.

According to him, there were still many businesses being run illegally and that the training was aimed at, among other issues, giving them snipers on how they should officiate businesses in efforts to hike the government revenue.

However, Mr Nyaisa reminded business officers to refrain from putting up unnecessary bureaucracies in issuance of business licenses which have been distracting investors and the business community at large.

“Although you have a role to play in hiking the country’s revenue, it should be noted that business officers should not act as revenue officers, and one among your roles is to facilitate instead of discouraging business,” he noted.

He added that even in some instances where businesspeople have huge outstanding debts, wisdom should prevail by allowing them to clear their dues in installments instead of closing their business this paralysing the country’s economy.

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