Gaming firms await as MPs set for taxation debate


Gaming firms await as MPs set for taxation debate

After a setback that restored the punitive taxation noose back around their necks, gaming firms will watch as Members of Parliament (MPs) brace for a fresh debate on the matter before going on recess.

President Uhuru Kenyatta Tuesday declined to assent to the Finance Bill 2017 after the MPs deleted the provision on increase of gaming tax to 50 percent from the current 15 percent.

The bill was meant to amend the laws relating to various taxes and duties with the fate of the gaming firms on the proposed new rates now lying with the National Assembly Finance Committee.

National Assembly Deputy Speaker Joyce Laboso has referred the President’s memorandum on a proposed 35 percent taxation levied on betting firms to the House Finance Committee led by Ainamoi MP Benjamin Langat.

Laboso also directed the committee to table its report by Thursday morning before the House goes on recess the same day in the afternoon ahead of the August 8th polls.

In his budget speech National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich, the chief proponent of the 50 percent tax rate rise, said that the hike was meant to discourage gambling, with the additional proceeds being used to fund cultural and arts programmes across the country.

Rotich’s proposal in March was met with rage from stakeholders in the sector that is witnessing steady growth as well those in the sports sector who have benefited from direct investment from gaming firms.

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Story By Richard Bosire
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