FIJI ANNOUNCES THREE-MONTH AMNESTY FOR TAX EVADERS

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SUVA, Fiji (April 19, 1998 - PACNEWS/Ioane)---The Fiji government has announced a three-month tax amnesty period in efforts to collect unpaid taxes and increase government revenue.

The amnesty period will start May 1 and end July 31.

It will give those who owe taxes a one-time chance to pay them without incurring penalties of up to 300 percent, Island Networks Corporation reports.

Finance Minister Jim Ah Koy says the government is losing up to $F 100 million ($US 75 million) annually as a result of non-payment of taxes.

The amnesty is a major initiative by government, Ah Koy says, to bring people into the tax system and to spread the payment of taxes more fairly, adding that the three-month tax amnesty period could be extended if the response is good.

A major advertising campaign is being organized to alert people to the project and advise them about requirements.

Project operations will be handled by a special amnesty unit in the government's Inland Revenue Department.

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