The Government of Uganda is in advanced stages of finalizing a plot to start taxing chapattis, rolex, bread and other wheat related products, Business Focus reveals.
This plot is awaiting approval from Parliament
It was fronted by David Bahati, State Minister for Planning on April13, 2017 while meeting legislators on the Parliamentary Finance Committee.
Bahati said that the move was intended to increase Uganda's tax base. If approved, this is likely to inflict more pain on poor Ugandans who survive on Chapattis and rolex as the price to the end consumer will also go up.
The details of this plot are contained in the Excise Duty Amendment Bill 2017, as part of the changes Government wants to see implemented in the 2017/18 national budget.
Defending the tax, Bahati noted that wheat flour has been exempted from tax since 2013, and it was high time the tax bounced back.
He added that the refusal to tax wheat has cost Government Shs60bn in revenue losses, a move he says is hurting the economy.
"This is a reliable source of Government revenue considering that wheat is imported throughout the year. With exemption, revenue loss has been close to Shs60b per annum," Bahati revealed.
He however downplayed fears that the tax imposition will hike the price on wheat's by-products such as rolex, chapattis, bread and 'kikomando'.
"Wheat isn't a major food item for our population save for the urban dwellers who have capacity to buy its products that include bread, pizza, mandazi and chapatti," Bahati said.
It should be recalled that in August 2016, Government announced rolex (a mixture of chapatti, eggs and vegetables) as new tourism product.
The pronouncement was made at Uganda Media Centre by the State Minister for Tourism, Godfrey Kiwanda, who called on the world to embrace Uganda's rolex.
"In tribute to the United Kingdom and the Republic of Uganda, two bastions of strength in a world filled with strife, discrimination and terrorism."
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