Kenya National Chamber of Commerce and Industry is pushing the government to waive the one percent tax levied on businesses for three years to help them recover from the negative effects of the coronavirus pandemic.
Speaking during an export promotion seminar in Nyeri, the Chamber’s President Richard Ngatia said that unless the tax is waived, many businesses will collapse. Last year, many businesses closed while others had to scale down their operations.
“As a chamber of commerce we have engaged the government of waiving this tax for at least three years to give entrepreneurs a chance to recover and continue with their businesses,” said Ngatia.
Recently the government announced that it will start a one percent tax levy on all businesses regardless of whether one is making profit.
However Ngatia urged that more time is needed to cushion businesses.
He called on the government to formulate policies that give conducive environment to the community.
“We are asking to be cautioned and to be provided with a conducive environment for trade. We do not want a situation where we are double taxed by the government,” said Ngatia.
He said the Chamber has been able to source markets for horticulture in western counties through united Arab Emirates .
“We as chamber have transverse the globe through virtual meeting where we have been able to source for markers but our main problem is traffic at border points, which we are asking the government to address ” said Ngatia.
He added that many exporters are facing difficulties due to rejection of their produce in European markets due to the use of banned pesticides. Ngatia urged the ministry of agriculture to formulate a policy that will see that their is no usage of banned pesticides.
“We want to urge our government to enforce requirements of those markets by ensuring that such pesticides do not land in our country.”
Nyeri governor Mutahi Kahiga who graced the occasion called for full devolution of agriculture to counties to ensure that farmers are protected from cheap exports.
“As counties our hands are tied we cannot be able to enforce such regulations due to lack of. Policies ,we believe it the high time that the ministry functions are devolved ” said Kahiga.