The National Training Authority (NTA) this week informed stakeholders that, subject to finalisation of the requisite statutory processes, registered employers will not be required to pay the Vocational Education and Training (VET) Levy for the months of July and August.
The NTA took the decision as the Covid-19 pandemic continues to exert pressure on Namibian businesses operating in an already depressed and contracting economy.
“This payment break follows a recommendation in this regard by the NTA board to the ministers of higher education and finance, in accordance with provisions of the VET Act (No. 1 of 2008), which both ministers acceded to, recently,” read a statement from NTA’s Chief Executive Officer Jerry Beukes.
Beukes explained that the reprieve will amount to a reduction of approximately N$65 million in projected income from the collection of levies, for the 2020/21 financial year.
Said Beukes: “This reduction will not impact the ongoing implementation of strategic transformation and expansion interventions in the VET sector adversely, nor will it affect the sustainability of the VET Levy programme. The NTA and our line Ministry trust that this measure will reduce some of the pressure that continues to accumulate on Levy-paying employers and their already constrained cash flows.”
However, Beukes pointed out that employers must continue to submit payroll declarations for the two months and emphasised that this reprieve does not include the writing off of any outstanding penalties and interest. To prevent further accumulation thereof, he urged and encouraged employers to settle their arrears.
“The NTA wishes to express its appreciation to those registered employers who submitted Employer Training Grant (ETG) claims for the 2019/20 financial year submission round, by the extended submission deadline, as announced on 27 April 2020. This initial Covid-19 intervention, to extend the deadline from 1 May 2020 to 5 June 2020 and relax evidence requirements to only include invoices and proof of payment, have had the desired impact.
A notable increase in claims, compared to the preceding submission round (2018/19), has been recorded. In further overcoming employer cash flow constraints, these claims are being processed and payment thereof has started in earnest,” Beukes stated.
The NTA also recognised the proactive and coordinated contribution of its National Training Fund Council, Board of Directors and the minister of higher education in spearheading efforts to bring some relief to registered employers.
“These measures are a testament to our organisation’s commitment to finding real, stakeholder-focused solutions, in a time of great uncertainty for all,” Beukes stated.
2020-06-19 09:43:08 | 3 months ago