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September 25, 2018

Rethink decision on 16% VAT, state urged

Petroleum CS John Munyes (speaking), Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya (Right), Petroleum PS and Kakamega County Secretary Jacinta Aluoch at Kakamega County headquarters on Thursday. /CALISTUS LUCHETU
Petroleum CS John Munyes (speaking), Kakamega Governor Wycliffe Oparanya (Right), Petroleum PS and Kakamega County Secretary Jacinta Aluoch at Kakamega County headquarters on Thursday. /CALISTUS LUCHETU
The decision by Treasury CS Henry Rotich to implement the 16 per cent VAT on fuel will hurt the economy, Mining CS John Munyes has said.
He urged the government to find alternative ways to raise revenue to service its debts and development agenda. He said he wants the 16 per cent VAT levy suspended to allow for more discussions. The CS said the Kenya Pipeline Company has indicated lower levels of uptake and Kenyans are not buying enough products because of the high levy.
“I want to appeal to President Uhuru Kenyatta and my colleagues in the sector to allow more time to discuss the VAT issue and to find a lasting and appropriate solution,” Munyes said.
He spoke in Kakamega on Thursday when he met Governor Wycliffe Oparanya during a fact-finding mission about the minerals prospective in the region.
Munyes said the implementation of 16 per cent VAT will give advantage to other countries over Kenya in the petroleum market and this will destabilise our economy.
“Lets look at the effects this is having on our economy now. We shall not be selling much across our country,” he said.
On Thursday,  Rotich held a crisis meeting with the National Assembly leadership over the 16 per cent fuel tax.
He was with Attorney General Paul Kihara, and deputy chief of staff Njee Muturi.
Speaker Justin Muturi, Majority Leader Aden Duale and Budget Committee chairman Kimani Ichung’wa were in attendance.
After the meeting, Rotich said they sought to settle the issues arising from the fuel tax imposed on September 1. “We have held discussions with the leadership of Parliament and we will have more engagements to find a solution.”
Muturi said they will hold more meetings with the Executive over the matter.
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