Most of the times we, as the diasporans, never pay attention to the budget in Kenya thinking it doesn’t affect us but in reality it does. After the reading last week (didn’t know all EAC countries read their budgets simultaneously on the same day….haiya, maendeleo), I decided to highlight a few things that would affect most diasporans. Some of the issues won’t affect you directly, but if you could inform your relatives in Kenya, it might reduce the amount of money you have to send to them monthly e.g. the increased bursary fund…..Read on to find out what else might apply to you and/or your relatives.
- The government is improving infrastructure which includes expanding the road network, construction of a railway line from Mombasa to Kisumu and completion of the LAPSET (Lamu Port). Improved geothermal development and power transmission.
- Uganda has reduced the number of banned imports from Kenya from 138 to 49 items. Good news for Kenyan exporters
- Modernized security in the country. The government increased it’s investment in the sector
- Galana irrigation project aimed to transform the coastal region into a production, agro-processing, packaging, distribution, exporting and tourism.
- More funding made available to small and large scale farmers
- Increased fund for SMEs and AGRIBUSINESSes
- Free maternal health care
- Increased provision for Presidential Secondary School Bursary Scheme
- The laptops will be delivered to schools this year.
- Employment of 30 nurses and 10 health workers per constituency = 1410 nurses and 470 health workers. There’s provision also for housing for the nurses and health workers
- Employers who employ young graduates without experience, get a tax break
- 30% of government tenders will be granted to youth, women and persons with disabilities.
- Government tenders will give preference to local products e.g. furniture, construction supplies, cars and foodstuffs
- zero tax for all items used to facilitate railway operations in order to support the expansion and development of the railway network in the region.
- All imported goods will have to pay 1,5% more as railway development levy.
- Zero tax on plastic biogas digesters
- increase import duty on welding electrodes from 10% to 25%, millstones and grindstones from 0% to 25% and plastic tubes for packing of toothpaste, cosmetics and similar products from 10% to 25%. To Encourage local products
- People with disability remain exempt from tax for another 5yrs (it started last year and was to end in 2015, but with the extension it ends in 2017)
- Imposing tax on winnings from gaming and betting
- Custom warehouse rent for goods that remain at the port longer than 21days.
- 50% tax exemption for beer made of millet, sorghum and cassava.
- KRA to use technology to map out all rental properties in urban areas and get all landlords/ladies to pay taxes
- Citizens of other EAC countries allowed to own insurance companies and brokerage firms in Kenya
- KRA commissioners will be allowed to collect corporate tax, from corporate bodies that are convicted of tax fraud.