South Africa: Africa Tax In Brief

Last Updated: 20 July 2017
Article by Celia Becker

Most Read Contributor in South Africa, July 2017

GHANA: Customs duty on spare parts abolished

On 14 June 2017, pursuant to the measures proposed in the 2017 Budget, Parliament passed the Customs Amendment Bill, 2017, which amends the Customs Act, 2015 by abolishing customs duties on the importation of vehicular (including motorcycles and bicycles) spare parts.

GHANA: VAT Flat Rate Scheme practice note issued

The Ghana Revenue Authority published Practice Note No. IDT/2017/001 on 12 May 2017, providing guidance on the operation of the Value Added Tax Flat Rate Scheme ("VFRS"), introduced earlier this year, including the scope and coverage of the VFRS, mode of migrating taxpayers to the VFRS, record keeping requirements and returns to be submitted.

GHANA: New import levy introduced

On 10 June 2017, the President announced the imposition of a 0.2% import levy on all imports from outside the Member States of the African Union ("AU"). The import levy is aimed at financing the activities of the AU and is the result of a decision adopted by the heads of state and government during the 27th AU Summit held in Kigali, Rwanda in July 2016.

KENYA: Finance Act, 2017 assented into law

Finance Act, 2017 was assented into law on 21 June 2017, introducing the following new tax changes:

  • capital expenditure incurred on the construction of transportation and storage facilities for petroleum products by the Kenya Pipeline Company Limited is to qualify for an investment deduction at either 150% or 100%, with effect from 1 January 2018;
  • a 150% investment deduction allowance for capital expenditure on buildings and machinery by special economic zone enterprises located outside of Nairobi and Mombasa is to be introduced with effect from 1 January 2018;
  • local motor vehicle assemblers are to be subject to a reduced corporate income tax rate of 15% for the first five years of operations with effect from 1 January 2018. The reduced rate shall be extended for five years if the company achieves a local content equivalent to 50% of the ex-factory value of the motor vehicles;
  • the period for repatriation of funds earned outside of Kenya subject to tax amnesty has been extended to 30 June 2018; and
  • with effect from 1 January 2018, the registration of tax representatives shall be in the name of the non-resident person being represented.

Please click here for an overview of the key tax changes introduced by the Finance Bill.

MALAWI: Revised excise duty rate

On 19 May 2017, the Malawi Revenue Authority announced, effective from 19 May 2017, the reintroduction of a single excise rate of USD15 per 1 000 cigarettes or its equivalent in Malawian Kwacha, for both imported and locally produced cigarettes. The single excise rate replaces the two-tier structure that previously existed for locally produced and imported cigarettes.

MALAWI: 2017/18 Budget presented to Parliament

On 19 May 2017, the Minister of Finance, Economic Planning and Development presented the 2017/18 Budget to Parliament. The Budget proposes the following tax measures:

  • revising the lower band of the personal income tax annual tax bracket from MWK240 000 to MWK360 000 and introducing a new income tax bracket of 35% for employment income in excess of MWK3-million per month;
  • exempting fresh milk from value-added tax ("VAT");
  • broadening the scope of interest subject to withholding tax;
  • imposing a 10% excise duty on television subscription fees; and
  • revising the exemption granted for the import of buses and minibuses.

MOZAMBIQUE: VAT Code amendments

A notice, dated 8 June 2017, rectified Law no 13/2016 of 30 December 2016 which amended and republished the Mozambican VAT Code, confirming:

  • the elimination of the VAT exemption previously applicable to the provision of drilling, exploration and infrastructure construction services in the mining and oil and gas sectors during prospecting and exploration stages; and
  • that any artistic, scientific, sporting, entertainment, educational services or ancillary services, as well as transport services provided within the national territory, would be deemed to be located in Mozambique.

NIGERIA: Voluntary Asset and Income Declaration Scheme launched

On 29 June 2017, the acting President signed an executive order for the implementation of the Voluntary Asset and Income Declaration Scheme ("VAIDS"), offering a nine-month amnesty period commencing 1 July 2017 and ending 31 March 2018 to defaulting taxpayers. The VAIDS offers amnesty from interest and penalties on unpaid taxes as well as protection from criminal prosecution.

NIGERIA: 2017 Budget signed into law

On 12 June 2017, the Acting President signed the 2017 Budget into law. Please click here for previously published details of the Budget.

NIGERIA: Reduced import and export documentary requirements

On 21 April 2017, the Federal Ministry of Finance issued a public notice announcing, with effect from 21 April 2017, the reduction of documents required for export and import as part of the government's efforts to improve the ease of doing business in Nigeria.

RWANDA: 2017/18 Budget presented to Parliament

On 8 June 2017, the Minister of Finance and Economic Planning presented the 2017/18 Budget to Parliament. The tax measures include:

  • the reduction of customs duties on the use of smart cards, ATM cards, point-of-sale cards and their operating machines from 25% to 0%, in order to promote a cashless economy; and
  • increasing import duties on importation of second hand clothes from USD2.5/ per kg to USD4 per kg in further support of the "made in Rwanda" initiative.

SEYCHELLES: Protocol to exchange of information agreement with Guernsey enters into force

On 14 June 2017, the amending protocol, signed on 12 August 2016 by Seychelles and on 1 September 2016 by Guernsey, to the Guernsey/Seychelles Exchange of Information Agreement, 2011 entered into force and generally applies from 14 June 2017.

SIERRA LEONE: 2017 Budget passed by Parliament

The 2017 Budget, published by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning, was approved by Parliament on 13 December 2016. The Budget contains the following proposed tax measures:

  • limiting the period of carrying forward tax losses to 10 years;
  • introducing a royalty charge of 0.5% on the turnover of every company or taxable person providing telecommunication services; and
  • increasing the payroll tax rate for ECOWAS citizens from SLL500 000 to SLL1.5-million, and for non-ECOWAS citizens from SLL3-million to SLL5-million.

TANZANIA: 2017/18 Budget presented

On 8 June 2017, the Minister of Finance and Planning presented the 2017/18 Budget to Parliament. Proposed tax measures include:

  • clarifying contradictory provisions in the Income Tax Act, it has been announced that corporations with unrelieved tax losses for three consecutive years will be liable for Alternative Minimum Tax at the rate of 0.3% of turnover in the third year;
  • a 5% final withholding tax is to be introduced on the market value of minerals for small-scale miners, but no guidance is provided regarding the basis for determining market value or the practical collection of such tax;
  • new assemblers of vehicles, tractors and fishing boats are to qualify for a reduced corporate income tax rate of 10% for the first five years of operation. Tax advisors have questioned the efficiency of the proposed measure as taxpayers in all likelihood would start showing taxable profits only after expiry of the five-year period;
  • expenditure qualifying for wear and tear allowances on non-commercial vehicles has been increased from TZS15-million to TZS30-million;
  • the tax bands, rates and thresholds applicable to individuals, which were last amended in 2008, are to remain unchanged. No further cuts have been introduced to the skills and development levy, which remains at 4.5%;
  • VAT, at the rate of 0%, is to be reintroduced on ancillary transport services in relation to goods in transit through Tanzania. Since July 2015, VAT at 18% has been charged on such services, which was not available as an input to non-residents not registered for VAT in Tanzania, thus significantly increasing their cost of doing business. Fertilised eggs for incubation, local produced compounded animal feeds and machinery and plant used in the edible oil, textile and pharmaceutical industries are to be exempt from VAT.

These measures are effective from 1 July 2017, unless otherwise stated.

UGANDA: 2017/18 Budget presented to Parliament

On 8 June 2017, the Minister of Finance, Planning and Economic Development presented the 2017/18 Budget to Parliament. The details of the proposed tax measures as summarised as follows:

  • clamping down on errant taxpayers, the Minister is to be granted powers to estimate rental income where taxpayers fail to submit rental income returns or provide misleading information;
  • the scope of anti-avoidance provisions is also to be expanded, granting powers to the tax authority to recharacterise transactions between "associates" not entered into on an arm's length basis. Previously, the arm's length requirement only applied to "taxpayers", which are more narrowly defined than associates;
  • after being repealed in 2016, a 15% withholding tax is to be reintroduced on winnings from sports or pool betting, but the gaming tax levied on operators on total amounts staked less total pay-outs is to be reduced from 35% to 20%;
  • the in duplum rule is to be introduced, limiting interest accruing on unpaid tax to the principal amount due. It is also proposed that interest due and payable as at 30 June 2017, which exceeds principal tax and penalties due, is to be waived. The initial allowance of 50% of the cost base of property more than 50km outside of Kampala brought into use for the first time, is also to be reintroduced.

Sources include IBFD's Tax Research Platform;;

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Some comments from our readers…
“The articles are extremely timely and highly applicable”
“I often find critical information not available elsewhere”
“As in-house counsel, Mondaq’s service is of great value”

Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
Email Address
Company Name
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Media & IT
 Real Estate
 Wealth Mgt
Asia Pacific
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.


Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.


Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.


A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.


If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.


This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.