Gaming firms taxation fate sealed as Uhuru assents to Finance Bill

Gaming firms taxation fate sealed as Uhuru assents to Finance Bill

President Uhuru Kenyatta has Wednesday signed 9 Bills into law including the 2017 Finance Bill at State House, Nairobi.

The Finance Act seeks to amend the law relating to various taxes and duties. It also seeks to amend the following laws among others.

The Betting, Lotteries and Gambling Act (Cap. 131) to increase the tax rates from the currents rates to 35%.

The Kenya Revenue Authority Act (Cap.469) to include the newly introduced laws: the Tax Procedures Act, 2015, the Value Added Tax Act, 2013, the Miscellaneous Fees and Levies Act, 2016 and Excise Duty Act, 2015 as part of the revenue laws administered by the Kenya Revenue Authority.

The Stamp Duty Act (Cap.480) to provide for tax neutrality for Islamic financial products to favourable compete with similar conventional products in Kenyan markets.

The Sacco Societies Act (Cap.490B) to define “deposits” and “deposit taking sacco business” to take on board the principles of Islamic law in the Act as a form of recognition of Islamic saccos.

Other Bills assented to by the President include the (2017 Division of Revenue Bill 2017), Supplementary Appropriation Bill (2017), Insurance Amendment Bill (2017), Health Bill (2015), Hydrologist Bill (2016), the Clinical Officers Bill (2016), Basic Education Amendment Bill (2016) and National Coroners Service Bill (2016).

The initial proposed 50 percent tax levy on gaming firms had sparked protests from industry that has grown steadily over the past few years with sports stakeholders in the country joining in the resistance.

Members of Parliament (MPs) had shot down the punitive tax rate rise whose chief proponent was National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich before Mr. Kenyatta declined to assent the Bill.

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