Uganda Revenue Authority recommends taxes on inheritance and excessive wealth
John Musinguzi Rujoki Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) Commissioner-General has suggested a tax on inheritance and extreme wealth, as the institution seeks to widen the tax base and revive the economy from the effects of COVID19.
Appearing before the Parliamentary Committee on National Economy on Tuesday 23rd June 2020, Musinguzi said that inheritance tax is one of the possible ways of taxing wealth. He noted that this move would go a long way to widen the tax base in Uganda
Musinguzi told the Committee that COVID19 pandemic had greatly affected the “poor” in the society compared to the “rich”. He added that the situation could even worsen the threats of the second wave of the pandemic.
“Pandemics usually hit the poor first and worst. The bigger the poor population is in a society, the worse the effects. It would, therefore, be feasible to levy presumptive inheritance taxes in the case of people known to be wealthy. ” Said Musinguzi
Additional, the Commissioner-General proposed taxes on loan interests and the reintroduction of the withholding tax on Agriculture trader’s supplies. Musinguzi observed that the move would go a long way to ensure a comprehensive tax base.
Furthermore, Musinguzi proposed a surcharge on transactions through the commodity exchange. He told the committee that it was quite surprising how Uganda is among the top 10 coffee growers and exporters in the world. Yet, there are no surcharges on these industries like its counterparts like Ethiopia.
Musiguzi was, however, keen to note that URA was considering to introduce solidarity charges by revising the tax higher on COVID19 winners like Health, Telecom, Ecommerce and digital which have thrived during COVID19.
The other tax measures proposed by Commissioner-General included reconsidering the rental tax package and have more companies join the stock exchange as it will reduce the transfer pricing issues and repatriation of money.
The Commissioner-General reiterated his commitment together with those of his team to ensure that they deliver their mandate. He called upon Parliament to fully support URA in its bid to ensure that the economy recovers from the effects of COVID19.