•There is need to have seamless linkages between government bodies meant to promote Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs).
•According to Omolo, decisions are currently not quick and largely remain scattered between units that are not clear or sometimes are uncertain about what to do or say.
Kenyan needs to ensure a stable and predictable tax and investment policy environment to attract investors, senior financial consultant Erastus Omolo now says.
There is also a need to have seamless linkages between government bodies meant to promote Foreign Direct Investments (FDIs).
According to Omolo, decisions are currently not quick and largely remain scattered between units that are not clear or sometimes are uncertain about what to do or say.
“I know Kenya is still ahead of other African countries in many areas, but we can be better, and we should not compare ourselves with failures,” Omolo told the Star in an interview.
A lead managing partner at accounting firm Crowe Erastus & Co., Omolo has been re-appointed to serve on the Crowe Global board.
“It is an honour to be re-appointed to serve on the global board. I am happy for another chance to contribute to the practice of accounting at an international level,” Ololo, who has over 40 years of experience in the industry, said.
He is the managing partner at Crowe Erastus & Co; a member firm of Crowe Global: the international accounting firm with presence in over 140 countries spanning Asia Pacific, Africa, Middle East, North America, Europe and Latin America.
According to Omolo, failure to sign the East African Agreement on Avoidance of Double Taxation is also a major hindrance to attracting FDI in the region.
“It does not seem to matter to the leaders in the region that we are losing out on FDIs. To the world, the EAC scene has presented a confused investment destination picture to would-be FDIs since 2009,” he said.
This is largely contributed to, by the fact that when the three countries (Kenya, Uganda, and Rwanda) out of the then five East African Community countries signed the Treaty on Double Taxation Avoidance, the treaty as it were, failed.
“The tax environment in Kenya is not too bad. The biggest problem, in my view, remains what some see as a lack of a uniform enforcement environment, that some who should be paying more tax are most likely not paying,” he added.
“The resent avalanche of new taxes creates shocks which, from a strategy point of view, one hopes helps taxpayers accept and settle down about is not necessarily good.”
The biggest tax revenue gap that must be fixed remains that of VAT, he said, even as he lauded RA for introducing the eTIMS system which, with time, should improve VAT collections.
Omolo who was first appointed to the Crowe global board in October 2021, says he will use the extension of his membership at the board to broaden investors’ understanding of the robust African market, global financial business flows, cross-border trading and tax opportunities – and by extension Kenya – and the opportunities it offers.
“We are delighted to have Erastus continue as a member of our board of directors,” Jim Powers, Chairman of Crowe Global, said.
According to Powers, the global accountancy profession is being disrupted by increased regulation, rapid technology changes, and a shortage of professionals at all levels of experience.
“Erastus and the other members of the Crowe Global Board of Directors and its Management Team are working with our member firms to assist them to, not only meet these challenges, but find new ways to excel in this dynamic environment,” Powers said.
Omolo’s presence on the board means Kenya will be among the countries with a presence on the Crowe Global Board of Directors and the only country from the African continent.
The other countries are US, Canada, UK, France, Germany, South Korea, Australia, Kuwait and India.