Business Finds GPRS Cash Registers Discriminating
22 December, 2011

Georgian business feels discriminated over the much trumpeted GPRS cash-registers system as the installation cost burden falls with business responsibilities and besides, traders may face penalties if they fail to buy required cash-machines till the end of this year.

To help business meet timelines the Revenue Service of Georgia (RS) will have its service-center open even at weekends across the country, and make banking credits available without interest rates to enable entrepreneurs to procure new cash-registers.

According to RS, all old cash

registers should be replaced till December 31, 2011 otherwise penalties will be imposed.

Unlike the currently operational cash-machines [that only print bills on sold products based on which tax officers calculate taxes] the GPRS-based cash-machines will be connected with the revenue service’s centralized base via on-line system and any financial operation made on the GPRS-based cash-registers will be automatically reported there. Accordingly, the revenue service will have full and comprehensive information on sales and financial activity of each trade-related business that prevents tax evasions.

Therefore economic analysts as well Tax Ombudsman believe it is RS not business that should assume the new cash-system related costs completely and provide cash-machines free of charge to all business.

In spring RS promised to insure installation of GPRS cash-registers free of charge to all business but later in June it changed terms and assumed to cover procurement expenses only to small business.

According to changes made to the tax code recently, part of small business [mostly micro business that operates in service sector and will be enjoying fixed taxes] is exempted from cash-registers obligation,  and the bigger part of small business is supposed to get new cash-registers free of charge, RS said on December 16, 2011.

Whether or not the RS will keep its promise is a matter of time but the fact is that it did not keep similar promise earlier. Many small businesses complains  that they had to buy GPRS cash-registers as far as RS announced only in June that cash-registers would be free to those businesses alone that would have acquired status of small business till August 4, 2011. Therefore small business that was registered after this deadline feels discriminated.

“I think it was just a lure to motivate business to register as small ones, “one small market owner, who prefers to keep his name confidential, told Georgian Journal. “That’s why they fixed quite short deadline in summer and I could not meet the deadline and had to buy a new cash-machine for GEL 320.”

Tax Ombudsman raised this issue with RS but they stick to position that [big] business should cover GPRS-cash-registers costs.

“According to the tax code, business has an obligation to have cash-registers and they have to buy them, if this machine breaks down are not they supposed to get a new one?” Lily Begiahsvili, Deputy Head of Revenue Service, asked.

“Business had an obligation to have cash-registers and they had them [not cheap ones by the way], but they do not bear responsibilities to buy new ones since RS decided to improve control system through new machines. RS had already changed by now active cash-registers older machines before, and business bought it. How many times is business supposed to buy new registers if RS changes system again?” Levan Kalandadze, an economic analyst, counters.

Traders question the price of the new cash-machines too. According to RS, the new registers cost GEL 290 while traders assure they paid GEL320.

“They say this kind of cash-machines cost EUR 40 [GEL 86.4] in the EU, so provider of this machine enjoys trice bigger profit, why is that?” the incognito source inquires. RS did not disclose the price-related details as yet.