Somali government has brushed off calls to scrap Value Added Tax (VAT) on imported goods, saying its port service charges are still low and affordable.
The Revenue Authority has attracted protest from the traders when it imposed 5 per cent on key services which were previously taxed lower at Mogadishu port.
Abdirahman Duale Beileh, minister of Finance on Monday said the amount of value addedTax (VAT) imposed on the commodities is based the revenue regulations and is not new charges.
“There is no new tax imposed on goods, the traders were asked to clear all port charges and other fee as per the regulations,” said Beileh during press conference in Mogadishu.
Port operation halts
Mogadishu port operations are partially halted after traders vowed to boycott the port over what they termed hefty charges, according to reliable sources.
The levies which rates 5 per cent were reportedly imposed last week subsequently leading the traders to be up in arms over commercial tax.
In a statement issued late last week, Benadir Business Community expressed concerns over hefty charges that the government slapped on their imported commodities.
Ministry for Finance, particularly RevenueAauthority has imposed heavy levies which make the taxation system of Mogadishu much higher than any other port in the country,” the statement reads in part.
The statement urged Somali ministry for finance to impose uniform taxation on the all commodities being imported and refrained from all that can lead infatuation