By Alice Lubwama

Parliament has passed the Excise duty amendment bill 2017 maintaining 20% excise duty on sugar confectioneries.

Under the new law, the excise duty on soft cap cigarettes locally manufactured has been increased from 50,000 shillings per 1000 sticks to 55000, while the excise duty on imported soft cap was increased from 50,000 to 75000.

The excise duty for imported hinge lid cigarettes has been fixed at 100, 000 shillings per 1000 sticks.

The excise duty on non-alcoholic beverages excluding fruit and vegetable juices was maintained at 240 shillings which is 13% .

Presenting the report of the parliamentary committee on finance, planning and economic development on the bill, the chairperson also Rubanda East MP Henry Musasizi said that Uganda currently has the highest excise duty on locally manufactured cigarettes in the region which affects its competitive advantage from the growth and investment point of view.

Photo Credit: JPR Arts

Special hire drivers call upon KCCA to reduce monthly dues

By Deo Wasswa
Special hire drivers   operating around Acacia mall have asked Kampala Capital City Authority to revise the monthly charges levied on them.  Some of the drivers have told our reporter say they currently pay a monthly due of 52000 to KCCA which is very high since few people use cabs.
They now want KCCA to reduce the dues to a more affordable rate

URA to collect tax arrears from MP’s salary of over 10 years

Commercial Court has ordered the parliamentary commission to deduct tax from members of parliament emoluments.
The order has been made  by Justice Henry Peter Adonyo after a successful petition filed by a one Francis Byamugisha seeking orders compelling URA to collect tax arrears since 2004 to date  from the parliamentary commission and a declaration that  all MPs salaries should be deducted   PAYE tax.
Evidence adduced before court showed that Kyadondo South MP Isa Kikungwe  receives each month more than 19 million shillings from allowances including subsistence allowance, Town Running allowance, Constituency allowance, Mileage allowance but no taxes were deducted yet all these earnings  were spent on personal liabilities making them liable to taxation .
Justice Adonyo based his reasoning on an admission from URA that MP’s emoluments, basic salary and gratuity are liable to income tax and pay as you Earn but over the years the parliamentary commission has failed decuct.
Justice Adonyo ordered that all taxes owing and due to the government of Uganda be collected and remitted to URA.

URA half year revenues grow by 20 percent

Uganda Revenue Authority- URA registered a surplus of Shillings 47.5 billion in the first half of the 2015/2016 financial year. According to Doris Akol, the Commissioner General, Uganda Revenue Authority, they had set a target of Shillings 5.5 trillion but collected Shillings 47.5 billion in excess.

While addressing the URA quarterly media briefing, Akol said the surplus revenue came from wholesale and retail, manufacturing and ICT sectors.

She said the revenue body posted 20 percent growth in the half year revenue collection, adding that she is optimistic the year will end well despite the anxiety about the next general elections. Akol attributed the good results to efficient administrative measures, which have simplified tax payment.

Baguma Kanyesigye, the URA Assistant Commissioner in Charge of Compliance Management, notes that the partnership between URA, KCCA, local governments and the finance ministry has yielded 100,000 new names on the tax register, bringing 800,000, the number of tax payers.
The URA is expected to collect 11.6 trillion Shillings this financial year, from the previous target of 9.7 trillion Shillings.