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Taxman to publish VAT list

Tuesday September 10 2013

National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich during a joint media briefing at The Treasury on September 4, 2013. PHOTO/DIANA NGILA

National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich during a joint media briefing at The Treasury on September 4, 2013. PHOTO/DIANA NGILA 

NATION TEAM
By NATION TEAM
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The Treasury and Kenya Revenue Authority will publish the tariff on all commodities exempted from VAT.

National Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich agreed with MPs that unscrupulous traders had taken advantage of the VAT Act to raise prices of commodities exempted from the tax.

“The challenge came about when we started implementing the law and the business people took advantage to raise prices yet it is clear which ones are exempted. KRA will start clarifying it tomorrow. There is a need for clarity because as it is, there is a misrepresentation of the law,” Mr Rotich told the MPs in Mombasa.

The lawmakers criticised the manner in which the VAT law had been implemented, saying it had seen prices of basic items, including food, go up by a huge margin.

The minister was responding to questions from MPs after making a presentation on the budget process.

Mr Rotich promised the MPs the Treasury would from Thursday disburse the remaining Sh2.4 billion CDF cash. He asked the CDF management to ensure “a good cash plan” is in place.

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The minister at the same time promised to look into the reasons why money meant to pay staff and buy furniture for constituency offices was yet to be released.

Mr Adan Keynan, a member of the Parliamentary Service Commission, said although Parliament had factored the money in the budget, the Treasury was yet to release the cash.

He asked the minister to ensure that money to pay staff was released on a monthly basis instead of the current mode of after every three months.

MPs normally receive Sh600,000 to furnish constituency offices and an additional Sh195,000 to pay staff .

Mr Rotich said his ministry “always gave priority to salary disbursement’,’ adding he would check whether PSC had made the acquisition request or whether it is stuck with Treasury.”

Meanwhile, the Finance, Planning and Trade committee said it would conduct a survey to ascertain the legality of the price increase on basic products and its relation to VAT.

Speaking on the sidelines of an induction workshop at Leisure Lodge Resort in Diani, Kwale County, committee chairman Benjamin Langat said the MPs would work with other interest groups, including Kenya Revenue Authority, in conducting the survey.

Reported by NJERI RUGENE [email protected] and AMINA KIBIRIGE [email protected]