USAID AND STATE REVENUE COMMITTEE OF ARMENIA UNVEIL TAX AUDIT GUIDEBOOKS
Yerevan, Armenia - During an official ceremony on March 21, 2011, USAID Armenia Mission Director Jatinder Cheema presented a two-volume audit guidebook to the Republic of Armenia State Revenue Committee (SRC). The guidebooks were published by the USAID-funded Technical Assistance to Support Tax Administration Reforms (TASTAR) project and developed jointly by TASTAR and the SRC to facilitate comprehensive audits in Armenian industry.
In her remarks, Dr. Cheema stated that “USAID’s assistance in this area will enable the tax authorities to avoid unnecessary duplication of program materials and minimize the resources and level of effort required to produce job-based documents. We believe that introduction of risk-based approach in this area and standardization of audits will enhance Armenian taxpayer’s confidence and will positively affect tax revenues.”
The first volume of the guidebook, which was developed by the SRC in 2009, captures the areas of health, education, construction, presumptive taxes, usage of the delivery and sales registration books, and implementation of the Article 22 of the Law on Taxes (indirect methods of calculation of tax liabilities). The second volume, jointly developed by the TASTAR and SRC in 2010, includes the sectors of tourism, transportation, real estate transactions, and use of cash registers. Both of the volumes will be distributed to the SRC auditors and posted on the SRC website for public access.
“The new strategy for audits, particularly for conducting risk-based audit, is one of the key directions of the tax sector reform. We attach importance both to the introduction of that system, and to the revelation of risks and tax reserves in concrete sectors. In this regard, it has been a year and a half that we started the development of tax audit guidebooks, four of which were implemented through direct assistance of the United States Agency for International Development with participation of international experts,” SRC Chairman Gagik Khachatryan said.
The books provide auditing guidance in important areas, including, initial interviewing, reviewing records, conducting tests of recordkeeping, and identifying unreported income. In addition to the preparation of the tax audit guidebooks, training sessions for the SRC’s 179 auditors were conducted throughout Armenia, featuring four Armenian Senior Tax Inspectors and the TASTAR’s experienced International Audit Advisor.