COUNTRY NEWS-BOTSWANA | ESWATINI | GHANA | KENYA | LESOTHO | MADAGASCAR | MALAWI | MAURITIUS | MOZAM

Updated: Nov 19


BOTSWANA


Interesting News

Filing of Individual Tax Returns If you are an employee who earned remuneration which is less than P144 000 in the 2020 tax year, you do not need to submit an income tax return this year. This is per a public notice issued by BURS. Since 2012, all individuals who earned more than P 36 000 per year were required to register with BURS and thereafter submit income tax returns, regardless of the type of income they earned. The new development basically means that exonerated persons will not need to submit income tax returns.

To read the full article, follow the link

Source: The Botswana Gazette, article by Jonathan Hore


ESWATINI


Interesting News

SRA stops all physical PAYE submissions The Eswatini (Swaziland) Revenue Authority (SRA) has issued strict instructions to the effect that it is no longer permissible for large and medium taxpayers to submit physical Pay As You Earn (PAYE) reconciliations. Following the recent public notice on filing of income tax returns for companies and individuals, the SRA led by Commissioner-General (CG) Dumisani Masilela advised all employers including those who do not have employees that fall within the PAYE tax bracket to submit an annual return of salaries for reconciliation purposes. To read the full article, follow the link Source: Eswatini Observer, article by Kwanele Dhladhla

GHANA


Legislation news

Ghana revises Communication Service Tax rate The Parliament of Ghana passed the Communication Service Tax (Amendment) Act, 2020, Act 1025 (the CST Amendment Act or Act) on 27 August 2020. The Act also was assented to by the President on 27 August and gazetted on the same date. The Act, however, sets 15 September 2020 as the commencement date. In a nationwide broadcast on 26 July 2020 (COVID-19 update #14), Ghana's President announced the reduction of the CST rate, as an additional measure to alleviate the hardships caused by the pandemic. Consequently, on 27 August 2020, the Parliament of Ghana passed the CST Amendment Act. The Act reduces the CST rate from 9% to 5%. The Act also provides that, at least 25% of the revenue generated from the tax be used to finance the national youth employment program. To read the full article, follow the link Source: Orbitax, The Tax Hub


KENYA


Interesting News

Nothing New for October


LESOTHO


Interesting News

Lesotho Holds Key Interest Rate at 3.5% The Central Bank of Lesotho held its benchmark interest rate at 3.50 percent during its September meeting, after cutting it by 275 basis points over the past six months, aiming to mitigate the effects of the COVID-19 shock and maintain macroeconomic stability. Policymakers also said the economy is projected to recover gradually in the medium-term and grow at an average growth rate of 4.6 percent over the period 2021-2022, while inflation is projected to register 5.1 percent in 2020 before increasing to 5.2 percent and 5.4 percent in 2021 and 2022, respectively. To read the full article, follow the link Source: Trading Economics


MADAGASCAR


Legislation News

Signature of DGI and CNAPS agreement The signing ceremony of the agreement between the Directorate General of Taxes (DGI) and the Caisse Nationale de Prevoyance Sociale (CNAPS) was held on Monday, September 14, 2020, between DGI Germain and the DG of CNAPS Rakotondraibe Mamy. This involves setting up a platform for data exchange and information sharing as well as a single declaration system for taxes and social contributions. "e-employee" will, on the one hand, allow administrations to optimize and secure transactions and the collection of public resources, the provision of a data centre, a good basis for dematerialization, support or computer program whose design and implementation are provided by a service provider. On the other hand, for users, it will aim at the continuous improvement of the services provided to them as well as the general environment of social security in Madagascar, but also the facilitation of the obligations of companies (electronic declaration and electronic payment of IRSA and social contributions in a single form. To read the full article, follow the link Source: General management of Taxes


MALAWI


Legislation News

Revenue Target, New Tax Measures Announced Finance Minister Felix Mlusu announced the revenue target during a presentation of the 2020/21 national budget in Parliament on Friday, September 11, 2020. He said Government has projected total revenue and grants for the 2020/2021 financial year at K1.435 trillion, representing 20.1 percent of GDP and a 6.0 percent decrease from the 2019/2020 approved figure. "Domestic revenues have been projected at K1.179 trillion representing 16.5 percent of GDP. Of this amount, K1.116 trillion in tax revenue while K63.1 billion is other revenues," he announced. The Finance Minister also announced new tax policies on Income Tax, Value Added Tax (VAT), administrative measures, trade agreements and international taxation. As far as Income Tax is concerned, Mlusu announced the increase of the Pay as You Earn (PAYE) tax-free threshold from K45, 000 to K100, 000 per month. Mlusu said Government realized the need to increase disposable income for salaried employees and enhance their purchasing power. "Government is aware that this adjustment is huge and to minimize its impact on the base for Personal Income Tax, the 15 percent middle bracket under the Pay As You Earn regime has been removed," he announced. To read the full article, follow the link

Please take note:

It is not clear how the removal of the 15% bracket will affect the rest of the tax table.

Also, the Taxation amendment Gazette is not available yet. This means that the proposed change is subject to approval.


The above was queried with the Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA), which responded with the following: "The new PAYE rates where revised from K45,000 to K100,000 effective 1st October 2020. These rates have to be gazetted into LAW before being implemented and once this is done MRA will publicise to the general public. As of now the gazette has not be done hence, we are still using the old rates. Once this is done people will be required to backdate their transaction to 1st October."


Supporting Legislation


Provisional Budget Statement


MAURITIUS


Legislation News

The Contribution Sociale Généralisée (CSG) Regulations 2020 Regulations made by the Minister under section 30F of the National Pensions Act were recently published in Government Notice No. 214 of 2020. As from 1 September 2020, the National Pension Fund is being abolished and replaced by a new system, the Contribution Sociale Généralisée (CSG), a progressive contribution system.

Under the CSG, employers are required to deduct, where applicable, the employee’s contribution from his/her wage or salary and pay that contribution, together with the employer’s contribution, to the Mauritius Revenue Authority (MRA).


The rate of contribution applicable to the private sector is shown below.






Supporting Legislation


Contribution Sociale Généralisée Communique

Government Notice No. 214 of 2020 (CSG Regulations 2020)


MOZAMBIQUE


Interesting News

E-Taxation System in Mozambique Mozambique tax authorities have recently introduced the "e-Taxation system" aimed at allowing taxpayers to pay their taxes and submit their tax returns in a digital way. The e-Taxation system allows taxpayers to submit their tax returns and proceed with respective payment through electronic means. The payment is made through the commercial bank of the relevant taxpayer. The proof of payment issued electronically is the supporting document evidencing submission/payment of the relevant tax return. Taxpayers may, however, request receipt of payment from the tax authorities. To join the E-taxation system you will have to submit an application to the relevant tax department alongside the following documents:

  • IRPS taxpayers - copy of the Identification Document (BI/Passport) or DIRE;

  • IRPC taxpayers – credential signed by the Company’s representative in favor of the user system.

To read the full article, follow the link Source: the ismaili Mozambique


NAMIBIA


Interesting News

Taxman extends individuals' tax returns deadline to 2021 THE deadline for the submission of annual income tax returns for individuals has again been extended to 31 March 2021 from the end of this month. This is the first time the taxman is extending the submission of the returns for such a long time, as the department grapples with a smooth transition from the traditional physical returns to the online platform. The Ministry of Finance' Inland Revenue directorate announced the postponement yesterday, saying it would allow employers enough time to submit employee tax reconciliation returns. To read the full article, follow the link Source: The Namibian, article by Lazarus Amukeshe Repo rate reduced to 3.75 percent On the 18th of August 2020, the Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) of the Bank of Namibia held its bi-monthly meeting and decided to reduce the Repo rate by 25 basis points, from 4 percent to 3.75 percent, a new historic low. The decision was taken following a review of global, regional and domestic economic and financial developments. This translates to a cumulative 2.75 percentage points reduction in the Repo rate since the beginning of 2020. To read the full article, follow the link Source: CRVW Insight News


TANZANIA


Interesting News

The Tanzania Revenue Authority directs that Tax Identification Number is mandatory to all employees All employers are directed to include employee’s Tax Identification Number (TIN) upon filing returns for Pay as You Earn (PAYE). Employers are required to put TIN numbers for all employees who had already been registered for TIN and show the amount remitted to TRA. Employees who do not have TIN are required to apply for the same before 31 December 2020. To read the full article, follow the link Source: Breakthrough Attorneys


UGANDA


Interesting News Nothing New for October


ZAMBIA


Legislation News

Zambian Government issues 2021 Budget On 25 September 2020, the Zambian Minister of Finance unveiled the 2021 budget to the National Assembly with the theme to "Stimulate Economic Recovery and Build Resilience to Safeguard Livelihoods and Protect the Vulnerable." In his address, the Minister noted that the COVID-19 pandemic has not only been a health crisis but has also adversely impacted the economy. Therefore, proposed health, fiscal and monetary policy measures were being implemented to mitigate these effects. The 2021 budget proposes changes to the following tax legislation:

  • Income Tax Act

  • Personal Income Tax – Pay-As-You-Earn

  • Transfer Pricing

  • Withholding Tax

  • Property Transfer Tax Act

  • Value Added Tax Act

  • Customs and Excise Duty Act

To read the full article, follow the link PAYE Changes An increase in the annual tax exemption threshold for PAYE was proposed from K36,000 to K48,000 and the adjustment of tax bands.

This will increase disposable income by a minimum of K175 per month if the monthly income is equal to K4,000.




Reference interest rate applicable on employee loan interest benefit The Hon. Minister proposes to adjust the reference interest rate to be used in the determination of tax applicable on employee loan interest benefits to be the Bank of Zambia policy rate plus a margin of 2.0%. This will allow for uniformity of interest rates used for assessment of the loan benefit.

Subsidiary Legislation


Full 2020/2021 Budget Speech


ZIMBABWE


Legislation News Tax changes announced in the Mid-term Budget Speech Presenting the Mid-Term Budget Review at Parliament on 16 July 2020, the Finance and Economic Development Minister Professor Mthuli Ncube announced various tax changes. The changes include:

  • Proposed Tax Table

  • Year of assessments in 2020;

  • Exemption from PAYE

Annual tax table effective 1 August 2020: The employee monthly tax-free threshold is increased from ZWL2,000 to ZWL5,000 per month. The foreign currency one remains at US$70 per month. The 40% marginal rate is applicable on income above ZWL100,000 or US$3,000 per month. It currently applies to income above ZWL50,000 per month.







Year of assessment in 2020 For the year beginning 1 January 2020 the year of assessment will be split into two periods:

  • First period: 1 January 2020 to 31 July 2020

  • Second period: 1 August 2020 to 31 December 2020

Taxpayers will have to submit two ITF16s for 2020. Exemptions from PAYE

  • For a period of 12 months commencing 1 April 2020, health workers will not pay any taxes on their COVID-19 risk allowances.

  • Companies that make COVID-19 donations now receive tax deductions to the equivalent of US$100,000.

  • Monetary benefits received, in lieu of a motor vehicle, by a chairperson, vice-chairperson, commissioner and secretary of an independent constitutional commission, chief director and director of the civil service will be exempt from tax.

Subsidiary Legislation

Mid-Term Budget Speech 2020/2021 Interesting News

Govt unveils foreign currency income tax thresholds Treasury has unveiled foreign currency-denominated income tax bands that will see the tax-free threshold pegged at US$350 while the highest bracket will be for those earning more than US$15 000 per month, who will be taxed at 40 percent. This comes as the Government has indicated that it will levy taxes in foreign currency on businesses that were trading in hard currency as Treasury seeks to have its tax structure reflect what is happening in the economy. Pegging of income tax in foreign currency is consistent with the Government’s position allowing those businesses such as fuel and mining firms and individuals with free funds to import products and sell them in hard currency and does not mean re-dollarisation of the economy To read the full article, follow the link Source: Herald

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