East African Community member states have failed to reach a deal on a common tax rate as the bloc’s smaller economies worry about significant revenue losses.
The failure to harmonise value added tax, income tax and excise tax rates has left the regional bloc deliberating on how to harmonise legislation and regulatory frameworks governing the operations of these taxes in each country.
A three-day meeting — convened by the EAC’s Sectoral Council on Finance and Economic Affairs in Arusha Tanzania from May 5-7 — to deliberate on the issue failed to agree on a policy framework to guide the process and instead sent the document to a consortium of experts. Read more. Source | East African
Poor and insufficient infrastructure remains one of Africa’s starkest development challenges. Despite the continent’s sustained growth and rapid urbanisation rates, its infrastructure investment deficit remains staggeringly high: $50bn annually, according to the African Development Bank.
Despite the growing appetite for African market risk in global companies that was on display at last summer’s US-Africa Leaders’ Summit, many firms remain squeamish about the greenfield risk that infrastructure projects often entail. Africa’s development partners must innovate to act as effective bridges to increased investment. The African Export-Import Bank (Afreximbank), a Pan-African trade finance multilateral organisation headquartered in Cairo, is quietly pioneering this effort. Read more . Source | beyondbrics
Uganda’s President Yoweri Museveni has re-emphasised the benefits of integration and observed that for over 50 years East African leaders have been working towards the integration of the region in particular and the African continent in general because of the numerous advantages for Africans.Museveni was addressing the 9th Northern Corridor Integration Summit at Serena Hotel in the Rwandan Capital of Kigali on Saturday.
Museveni also saluted the Kenya's President , Uhuru Kenyatta for waving off taxes levied on goods entering Uganda at the customs which, he said has reduced the delay of goods entering the country.
President Kenyatta said better infrastructure would also boost competitiveness and attractiveness of the economies and countries in the region.
The President spoke in Kigali, Rwanda during the 9th Northern Corridor Integration Summit that brought together the host President Paul Kagame, Uganda’s Yoweri Museveni and Salva Kiir of South Sudan.
President Kenyatta won personal praise from Presidents Museveni, Kagame and Kiir for his reforms at the Mombasa port, which has fueled faster movement of goods through the vital Mombasa regional lifeblood.
President Kenyatta said EAC member countries’ efforts in eliminating congestion and delays in movement of goods and people will enable sharing of surplus milk and energy produced in Uganda and Tanzania respectively for regional prosperity. Read more. Source | Capital Fm Kenya
East African Heads of State have commended achievements made under the Northern Corridor Integration Projects (NCIP) initiative and advocated for faster integration of the region to bring about prosperity.
Recent achievements of the Northern Corridor Integration Projects include the improved free movement of people and labour, the use of Identity Cards as travel documents, the establishment of One Network Area, the one visa for tourists coming to Kenya, Uganda and Rwanda and the waiver of work permits for EAC citizens in the northern corridor.
President Kenyatta argued that East African nations should not be importing from elsewhere when a surplus exists within the region and added that with a common market, nations have no reason not to be manufacturing its own cars or textiles among others. “ We can create a region that has a strong voice on a global scale and is an attractive place for investment,” Kenyatta added. Read more. Source | The New Times
East African Community member states are seeking to harmonise courier and postal service operations in order to ease the movement of parcels and cargo around the region.
Among the areas targeted for harmonisation are electronic transactions and licensing, and regulations for regional postal and courier operations.
The baseline survey for the EAC postal sector has been concluded, and a meeting to consider the report of the survey is scheduled for May,” said Philip Wambugu, the EAC Secretariat director of infrastructure. Read more. Source | The East African
East Africa is edging closer towards a single taxation regime in its bid to attract more capital from investors who have been putting their money in tax havens like Mauritius.
Kenya has joined Rwanda in ratifying the EAC double taxation agreement (DTA) that promises investors taxation in the country of incorporation rather than the country of operation within the bloc. Read more. Source | The East African
Senior officials and experts from member countries of the East African Community yesterday started a two-day session in Kigali ahead of the Northern Corridor Integration Projects (NCIP) Summit.
The summit, which is expected to be attended by at least four Heads of State on Saturday, is aimed at assessing the implementation status of 14 projects launched under the NCIP framework. Read more. Source | The New Times
The East African Community Council of Ministers has initiated the process of fast-tracking the Non-Tariff Barriers Bill into law. This is expected to compel partner states to eliminate the numerous NTBs that hinder smooth movement of goods and services within the economic bloc.
The EAC Elimination of Non-Tariff Barriers Bill, 2015 was passed by the East African Legislative Assembly in January to enable partner states to completely remove NTBs to allow free movement of goods, people and labour as a requirement by Common Market Protocol. Read more. Source | The East African
The cost of clearing cargo at the port of Mombasa and of transport along the Northern Corridor has gone down by 30 per cent since the implementation of the East African Single Customs Territory (SCT). Read more. Source | The East African