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Tanzania committee says billions lost to corporate tax evasion

The Tanzanian parliament, eager to curb a rising tide of corporate tax evasion and avoidance, has launched an inquiry into the extent of illicit financial transfers in Tanzania and ways to stop the flow. The probe follows a parliamentary declaration last year that called on the government to investigate individuals suspected of stashing away ill-gotten wealth in offshore bank accounts. Zitto Kabwe, chairman of the parliamentary committee on public accounts, has said Tanzania is losing about $1.25 billion a year in revenue – equivalent to five percent of its gross domestic product (GDP) – through corporate tax avoidance, evasion and corruption. The money Tanzania loses through these “illicit transfers” would have a significant impact on the economy, especially if spent on improving infrastructure, education and health services, he told a recent conference in Dar es Salaam.