Finance

Betting on consolidation of the insurance industry to increase product penetration

As of 2020, the insurance penetration rate in Kenya was at 2.17 percent, down from 2.34 percent in the preceding year. Kenya has maintained a descending trajectory since 2016, when the penetration rate was at 2.78 percent.  Research conducted by the Insurance Regulatory Authority (IRA)

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Proposed Regulations on Share Buybacks under the draft Capital Markets (Securities)(Public Offers Listings and Disclosure) Regulations, 2022

The Capital Markets Authority (CMA) has published draft rules that will, among other things, provide for share buybacks by listed companies in Kenya. Despite the Companies Act, 2015, introducing the concept of share buyback in the country, the CMA expressed concerns that the move could

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The delicate balance of safeguarding stakeholders and creditors’ interests during administration

The essence of administration is to rescue companies that are under financial distress while safeguarding the interests of creditors and other stakeholders in the company. One of the key objectives of administration as set out under the Insolvency Act, 2015 is to achieve a better

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Treasury avoids tricky decision on long-term action on fuel

The good news from the Budget Statement was that fuel would be spared the proposed 10 per cent increase in Excise Duty that the Treasury has asked the National Assembly to impose on Kenyans when the Finance Bill is passed.  The bad news, according to

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Tax Talk Series webinar: A look at post Budget effect on taxes

The Tax Talk Series hosted by the Kenya Revenue Authority held a webinar on April 8, 2022, to discuss the post budget effects on taxes. The session which lasted for close to an hour was moderated by Nixon Omondi – Manager, Digital Economy, Tax Office.

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New regulations set to tame predatory digital lending practices in Kenya

Digital lenders have up to September 2022 to comply with regulatory requirements, including licensing by the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK). The Central Bank of Kenya (Digital Credit Providers) Regulations, 2021 (“Draft Regulations”), which are expected to be published before the end of March 2022,

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Cybersecurity in Kenyan Fintech, threats, trends and solutions: Highlights of GIZ Report, 2022

Digital payments are progressively entering the mainstream, in correlation to the increased access, use, and adoption of ICTs in Kenya. However, the transition to and eventual adoption of digital payments will bear its own risks, in the form of cybersecurity risks.  Against this backdrop, “A

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Shadow Budget Report casts doubt on economic recovery as rising debt and electoral jitters persist

The 2022/23 Annual National Shadow Budget by IPFK™ for Kenya is the second edition, and it is one of its kind in the country.  The production of the Shadow Budget was supported by the integrated marketing firm Oxygéne Marketing and Communication Limited with the aim

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The security initiative in CBK’s National Payments Strategy 2022-2025

In this second part of our series on the Central Bank of Kenya National Payments Strategy for 2022 – 2025 (NPS Strategy), we examine CBK’s strategic initiatives under the principle of security. A core focus of the strategic initiatives under security is ensuring adequate protection

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A first for mobile digital lenders after Branch International acquires majority stake at Century Limited

On February 9, Branch International Limited acquired a majority stake in Century Microfinance Bank Limited effective January 1, 2022. This follows CBK’s approval on December 30, 2021, under Section 19 (4) of the Microfinance Act and approval by the Cabinet Secretary for the National Treasury

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CBK’s strategic initiatives in the National Payments Strategy: Key highlights

The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) unveiled its National Payments Strategy for 2022 – 2025 (NPS Strategy) this week. The NPS Strategy is anchored on the vision of a secure, fast, efficient and collaborative payments system that supports financial inclusion and innovations that benefit Kenyans.

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Central Bank Digital Currency discussion: The pros, cons and reading between the lines

Central Bank Digital Currency discussion: The pros, cons and reading between the lines The Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) recently released a discussion paper on a Central Bank Digital Currency (CBDC) intending to tease out a conversation around the possible introduction of a digital currency

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Taxman’s eye on social media posts good for enhanced compliance

By Brian Kuira Recent media reports that the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) would train its eyes on taxpayers who display luxurious lifestyles on social media but under-declare their income sparked a heated debate among Kenyans.  A section of Kenyans termed the move a misplaced priority.

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What you need to know about unclaimed financial assets

Recent media revelations paint a shocking picture of vast amounts of unclaimed assets that lie idle despite Kenyans going through a tough economic season. According to the media reports, the amount of unclaimed assets currently stands at KSh 55 billion, with a paltry KSh 1

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Central Bank of Kenya Diaspora Remittances Survey 2021

This week, the Central Bank of Kenya released the results of the first-ever Diaspora Remittances Survey (the “Survey”). The Survey was conducted between March and May 2021 by the Central Bank of Kenya in collaboration with the Kenya National Bureau of Statistics and the Ministry

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KRA records excellent performance, Exceeds target in first half of FY 2021/22

The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) has recorded an above-target revenue performance in the first half of the Financial Year 2021/2022 after collecting KShs. 976.659 billion against a target of KShs. 929.127 billion thanks to higher tax compliance. Patriotic taxpayers keen on facilitating national development allowed

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Hike in comprehensive motor insurance premiums rubs Kenyans the wrong way

Insurance customers have been burdened with an increase in insurance rates beginning January 1, 2022. A number of insurance companies have indicated that the increase will be up to 50% of premiums while others have indicated that they will not offer a comprehensive insurance cover

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Brands should embrace online content creators

By: Grace Wandera Brands have since time immemorial invested in every opportunity available to enhance their presence and reputation among the target market. Maintaining a good reputation and presence is among key priorities for every brand. While a number of years ago brand consciousness was

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Greening Kenya’s Banking Sector

By Dr. Patrick Njoroge We have a problem. The recently released State of the Climate in Africa 2020 report, indicates that in 2020, the climate indicators in Africa, were characterized by extreme weather events such as floods and droughts, increasing temperatures and accelerated rise in

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Mergers & Acquisitions: Lessons to Learn From Rubis And Gulf Energy Dispute

Gulf Energy and Rubis Energy are battling in court over privacy and security issues that arose after an acquisition. Rubis Energy acquired KenolKobil in 2019, a transaction that enabled it to acquire Gulf Energy. In the transaction, Gulf Energy transferred all its ICT assets including

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Highlights of the State of the Banking Industry Report, 2021

The Kenya Bankers Association Centre for Research on Financial Markets and Policy released the third annual State of the Banking Industry (SBI) Report on 27th July, 2021. It focuses on the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the banking industry and its pass-through effects to

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Key Strategies in the Transformation of Kenya’s Tax Administration

Dr Mohamed Omar – KRA Commissioner – Strategy, Innovation and Risk Management Tax systems go through changes over time, as economies and societies equally evolve. Tax administration in Kenya has been going through reforms, most notably over the last ten years when the intentional use

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The draft Capital Markets (Investment Based Crowdfunding) Regulations, 2021.

The Cabinet Secretary to the National Treasury and Planning is proposing to make the Capital Markets (Investment Based Crowdfunding) Regulations, 2021. The Regulations will apply to investment-based crowdfunding platforms in Kenya. They will also apply to persons who are operating investment-based crowdfunding platforms in Kenya. 

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More than 5.5 million taxpayers file returns as filing period closes

More than 5.5 million taxpayers filed their tax returns for the year 2020 as the filing period officially closed at midnight on Wednesday 30th June 2021. This means that 1.1 million more taxpayers turned out to file their returns this year compared to the 4.4

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File your Annual Tax Return to avoid penalties for Non-compliance

By Rispah Simiyu  Worldwide, a good tax compliance score is a fundamental aspect for the smooth running of any business or any profession. Contrary to popular belief, tax compliance is not entirely defined by payment of taxes only. Filing of tax returns is equally an

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The Kenya Revenue Authority launched the 8th Corporate Plan 2021/2022 – 2023/2024

This Plan is the eighth in the life cycle of the Authority and runs under the Theme: Revenue Mobilization through tax simplification, technology-driven compliance and Tax Base expansion. In this Plan, the Vision remains to be ‘A globally trusted revenue agency facilitating tax and customs

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Finance Bill, 2021

TAX AMENDMENTS HIGHLIGHTS Introduction: The Finance Bill, 2021 was published on 05th May 2021. The reason for publishing the Bill early, as was the case in 2020, was to comply with the ruling by Justice Winfrida Okwany referencing Petition Number 253 of 2018 where the

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Revamped Tax Appeals Tribunal means a boost to resolution of tax disputes

By Paul Matuku In the course of the day-to-day tax administration process, tax disputes are inevitable. Tax disputes arise especially where a taxpayer disagrees with a decision made by the Commissioner on a given tax matter. There are various legal frameworks that have been put

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Minimum tax is an idea worth pursuing

Taxing businesses on profits as
it has always been means
that loss making entities
comfortably escape the
taxman’s noose. Bear
in mind that the onus of
determining profits or losses
rests on the taxpayer.

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Kenya National Payments System (NPS) Vision and Strategy 2021-2025

The Central Bank of Kenya
has come up with Kenya
National Payments Vision
and Strategy 2021-2025
to regulate this area more
effectively. The paper is open
for public participation until the
31st of January 2021.

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Minimum tax to enhance equity, inclusivity in tax payment

In order to expand
the tax-base in
the country, the
government,
through the
Finance Act 2020,
has introduced
a raft of new tax
measures which
took effect on 1st
January, 2021. One
of the tax measures
implemented early
this month is the
minimum tax.

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2021 ushering in tax changes

Kenya has greatly been affected by the outbreak of Covid-19 that was subsequently declared a global Pandemic. Businesses had to minimize their activities due to the Pandemic. This led to job cuts, unpaid leave and redundancies as profitable entities moved into losses. Millions of Kenyans

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Kenya on course to implement global tax exchange of information protocols by 2022

SPECIAL FEATURE: The Kenya Government has reiterated its commitment in implementing international standards on transparency and exchange of information for tax purposes as part of a national effort to curb tax evasion and illicit financial flows. Speaking at the OECD Global Forum on Transparency and

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Government set to roll back COVID tax relief measures in January 2021

Per statistics by the World Bank, Kenya is set for a relatively short setback from COVID-19 with a s 4 percentage-point dip in growth this year, and 5.2 percent growth returning in 2021. This is still a permanent loss of 5 percent of GDP over

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Demystifying Digital Service Tax

On 27th November, 2020, the Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) hosted an online sensitization forum on Digital Service Tax (DST). In his presentation, Mr. Nickson Omondi provided highlights of the policy and legislative changes that have been effected in order to operationalise DST which comes into

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Summary of the consolidated government investment report 2019/2020

Introduction The Consolidated Government Investment Report 2019/2020 (“the Report”) is put together in accordance with Section 89 of the Public Financial Management Act, 2012.  The Section requires the Cabinet Secretary for Public investments to submit to Parliament, a detailed status of Government Investments for each

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KRA Commissioner General elected as member of ATAF executive arm

The Commissioner General of the Kenya Revenue Authority was nominated as a Member of the Governing Council of the Africa Tax Administration Forum (ATAF). He was voted during the ATAF General Assembly meeting held 4th November, 2020 by 13 member states, accounting for the highest

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Highlights of Virtual 2020 Taxpayers Day- 6th November 2020

The main objective of the occasion was to recognize taxpayers from various sectors of the economy for their contribution towards nation-building. This year’s celebration is anchored on the theme; “Enhancing Tax Administration for Economic Sustainability’’ similar to the Tax Summit. During the meeting, the Commissioner

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Highlights of Kenya Revenue Authority 6th Annual Tax Summit

The 6th Annual Tax Summit that took place on the 4th and 5th of November, 2020, sought to advance conversations based on the four strategic goals that guide its 7th Strategic Plan by driving public and international participation in discussions geared towards providing solutions for enhancing

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Combating Tax Evasion: Intelligence-driven approaches

The commendable progress made so far can only mean one thing: the days for tax
evasion perpetrators are continually diminishing. Through such collaborations, the
country is now better equipped to emancipate tax revenues trapped in the intricate
web of tax evasion schemes.

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Is Huduma Number the future of KYC

On Wednesday,
during the
unveiling of the
Central Bank
branch in Kisii
County, the
President said
that the rollout of
Huduma Namba
will change
operations in the
banking industry.
He said that the
new system will
make it easier
for banks to
capture details of
clients’ increasing
confidence in
dealing with them.

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Excellent service delivery is key to KRA’s successful delivery of mandate

CRM is a state-of-the-art system which has revolutionised how KRA engages with taxpayers virtually. Diversification of the virtual customer assistance platforms is informed by the need to take care of the equally diversified base of taxpayer

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President Uhuru Kenyatta signs County Revenue Allocation Bill into law

President Uhuru Kenyatta signs revenue County Revenue Allocation Bill into law President Uhuru Kenyatta signed the 2020/2021 County Revenue Allocation Bill into law on Thursday 9th October 2020. This Act allocates a total of Sh369.87 billion to counties. A breakdown of the allocation comprises equitable

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Inflation adjustment on specific rates of excise duty

The Kenya Revenue Authority published a notice informing manufacturers and importers of excisable goods and members of the public that the Commissioner General will adjust the rates of excise duty using the average inflation rate for the financial year 2019/2020, as determined by the Kenya

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Minimum Tax: Leveling playground for businesses and sealing revenue loopholes

By Stephen Kyande
Kenya is one of the jurisdictions in the world that operate a self-assessment tax administration
regime. Primarily, this kind of regime is purely based on trust where the taxman trusts that the
declarations of income made by taxpayers are a true reflection of the income generated. At a
secondary level, the taxman may issue an assessment as well as other remedial measures
stipulated in the law in case there is suspicion of under-declaration of income by a given
taxpayer.

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Voluntary Tax disclosure programme: Opportunity for clean bill for tax payers

By Stephen Kyande High tax compliance levels are the backbone of enhanced revenue mobilisation and collection in any jurisdiction. As such, tax administrators employ varied strategies in order achieve high compliance levels. One such strategy is provision of tax amnesty windows. Under tax amnesties, taxmen

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The Public Finance Management (Credit Guarantee Scheme)Regulations, 2020 Highlights

The Cabinet Secretary for the National Treasury and Planning has published the Public Finance Management (Credit Guarantee Scheme) Regulations, 2020. These Regulations will establish a Scheme that will be known as the Credit Guarantee Scheme. The funds of the Scheme shall consist of monies appropriated by Parliament, proceeds of the Scheme, income from investments made by the Scheme grants, donations, bequests or other gifts and monies from any other source as may be approved by the Cabinet Secretary.

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The Proceeds of Crime and Anti-Money Laundering proposed reforms

The National Treasury has published the Proceeds of Crime and Anti-Money Laundering Criminal Assets Recovery Fund Administration Regulations of 2020. Criminal Assets Recovery Fund The draft Regulations are a good step in the implementation of Part XI of the Proceeds of Crime and Anti-Money Laundering

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Why more taxpayers are opting for ADR in resolving tax disputes

In a quiet revolution against the traditional practice of enforcement, taxmen globally are now showing serious interest in finding ways to solve business disputes without going to trial. Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) has not been left behind in this revolution and is indeed among the

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Highlights of the Central Bank of Kenya (Amendment) Bill, 2020

In February, the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK) and the Treasury announced that they are preparing a law that will cover digital mobile lenders. It was during this period that the CBK Deputy Governor Sheila M’Mbijjewe shared that a suicide incident had been reported to

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MPs issue fresh threats to CBK boss on Sh1-million rule

Three House committees are angry at the Governor for the CBK’s failure to submit crucial but unpopular regulations.

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