Microsoft has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with E-Tax, a company affiliated with Egypt’s Ministry of Finance, in cooperation with e-finance, an Egyptian developer of digital payments infrastructure.
The agreement will allow the utilisation of artificial intelligence (AI) techniques as part of the digital solutions for the Egyptian tax systems. The signing supports Egypt’s move towards digital transformation, financial inclusion, and providing financial electronic services supported by modern technology.
According to the MoU, Microsoft will support digital transformation efforts in Egypt by employing AI and business intelligence techniques in the tax system. In addition, E-Tax will be able to enhance its role in developing the basic capabilities necessary for digital transformation for the Egyptian Tax Authority (ETA).
This includes electronic invoice and electronic invoice service providers, as well as smart business reports in the area of tax and tax fraud.
E-Tax Chairperson Ibrahim Sarhan praised the agreement, saying that his company provides specialised technology services, digital transformation projects, technology consultations, and human resources with expertise.
The company aims to develop the current electronic tax system and improve tax management, in a way that makes it easier for people who deal with the ETA.
Sarhan added that the partnership with Microsoft will enable his company to benefit from the US company’s vast experience and advanced services. This will take place in a way that is consistent with achieving their own vision during the coming period.
Mirna Aref, General Manager at Microsoft in Egypt, highlighted the importance of the agreement, saying, “The pandemic has proven that digital transformation is the only way towards achieving sustainable business and services.”
“We, at Microsoft, feel proud that we are contributing to the great efforts of the Egyptian government to achieve digital transformation in all fields,” she added, “We hope that this partnership would be the beginning of more collaborative efforts in this field, as Microsoft will contribute to building capabilities related to the services it provides, in addition to connecting E-Tax with our tax partners.”
For his part, E-Tax CEO Khaled Abdel-Ghany expressed his happiness with signing the MoU with a global giant like Microsoft.
He noted that E-Tax is seeking partnerships with global entities as part of its goal to utilise the latest data science technologies and AI services. He added that this has become an integral part of digital transformation efforts, and a successful tool to create modern technologies that can best organise data.
“AI technologies will give us tremendous advantages in terms of collecting, analysing and processing large amounts of information and data in record time,” Abdel-Ghany said, “We would also classify them much faster, objectively, and more accurately, as this ensures that we make the best decisions and achieve our goals of preserving the resources of tax authorities and increasing their proceeds.”
He revealed cases of suspected non-compliance, especially with the Egyptian Government’s plan to implement the electronic invoice system. The e-system can help intelligence technologies develop an accurate profile for each taxpayer.
E-Tax was officially launched in 2021 during an official event held in Cairo, in cooperation between E-Finance and the Ministry of Finance. The event hosted Minister of Finance Mohamed Maait and e-finance Chairperson Ibrahim Sarhan, in addition to several senior leaders and officials.
The launch of E-Tax highlights the successful partnership between the Ministry of Finance and e-finance, which resulted in the emergence of electronic tax returns for the first time in Egypt.
It was also a direct reason to provide facilitated procedures for taxpayers, resulting in remarkable growth in tax and customs revenues as well through Tax and Customs Electronic Payment and Collection Center.