As a clampdown on the tax-evasive actions of some importers of raw materials used for making poultry and animal feeds in Uganda, the Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) has seized some inbound trucks carrying these raw materials. This is according to Africa Tax Review on its website. The URA also stated that another reason for seizing these materials was that some importers brought in sub-standard premixes instead of the standard and formerly tax-exempt concentrates.
According to Africa Tax Review, until 23rd September 2022 when the URA started collecting taxes on raw materials for poultry and animal feeds, these raw materials had been tax-exempt since 2018. One Ms. Josephine Nakimera, who is a Clearing agent at the Malaba border, stated that the biggest issue now is that the URA is demanding payment of all the taxes due on all imports of raw materials in 2018.
The seizure of these trucks has led to the scarcity and inflation of poultry and animal feed prices across Uganda. Mr. Henry Biyinzika, who owns a poultry, expressed his worry that farmers would not be able to sustainably feed their birds if the tax fight between the URA and the importers continued.
The URA has seized about 250 inbound trucks on the grounds of tax arrears to the tune of Shs18billion. These trucks are currently at Uganda’s borders, and have raised concerns from Ugandan Clearing and Forwarding Agents who have had their businesses disturbed by them.
It was also reported that Mr. Ibrahim Bbosa, URA’s Assistant Commissioner of Public and Corporate Affairs, explained that the Ugandan VAT Act was amended in 2017, providing for zero VAT and import duty on premixes, but importers started abusing the provision by declaring concentrates they bring in as premixes, in order to circumvent the required 18% import duty on concentrates. The URA has offered importers 30 days to clear their goods, so long as they agree to sign a letter of indemnity.
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