Kenya plans to start taxing digital service providers such as Google, Netflix, and Uber

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The Kenya Revenue Authority is seeking to introduce a Value Added Tax on supplies made through digital marketplaces such as Google, Apple, Netflix, Spotify, Apple Music, etc. 

Following the amendments to the VAT Act, 2013 by the Finance Act, 2019, the tax collecting body in Kenya has invited sector players, tax professionals and members of the public to submit their comments on the draft regulations.

Generally, companies that offer digital services in the East African nation will be required to register for value-added tax or appoint a tax representative before they can operate, going forward. Should they fail to do so, the providers risk restriction of access to the Kenyan market, Weetracker reports

RELATED: New payments bill seeks to heavily regulate fintech in Uganda

The services the Kenya Revenue Authority is seeking to levy taxes on include; 

  • Downloadable digital content including downloading of mobile applications, e-books, and movies
  • Subscription-based media including news, magazines, journals, streaming of TV shows and music, podcasts and online gaming
  • Software programs including downloading of software, drivers, website filters and firewalls
  • Electronic data management including website hosting, online data warehousing,file-sharing, and cloud storage services
  • Supply of music, films, and games
  • Supply of search-engine and automated help desk services including supply of customized search-engine services
  • Tickets bought for live events, theaters, restaurants, etc. purchased through the internet
  • Supply of distance teaching via pre-recorded medium or e-learning including the supply of online courses and training
  • Supply of digital content for listening, viewing or playing on any audio, visual or digital media
  • Supply of services on online marketplaces that links the supplier to the recipient, including transport hailing platforms
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