The crux of their argument is that
That argument is supported by the fact that removal of VAT charge on mobile phone handsets in 2008 has seen mobile phone penetration in
The counter argument is therefore that charging VAT — locally fixed at 16 per cent — will have the reverse effect of slowing down that growth. These arguments are valid but may have come too late.
President Kenyatta has assented to the VAT Bill making it an enforceable law. All that is remaining is to gazette the date of its coming into force for it to take effect.
Those agitating against this tax should remember that the arena of public policy-making is fraught with many contradictions often requiring tough choices to be made.
Given the high level of mobile phone penetration, the question before policy makers is whether continuing to drive growth takes precedence over the quest to grow tax revenues in order to meet the country's pressing needs.
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