Dar es Salaam, Tanzania: Kenya will keep paying a 25 per cent levy on confectioneries exported to Tanzania for an indefinite period.
That is until Tanzania is fully satisfied that the industrial sugar used to manufacture the sweet, biscuits, chocolates et al from Kenya is not zero-rated in terms of import duty, as Tanzania alleges.
According to Tanzania’s Commissioner for Customs and Excise Ben Usaje, a report that was prepared by the East African Community (EAC), that was supposed to shed light on Kenya’s denial of Tanzania’s tax-cheating allegations, is not conclusive and now Tanzania wants the EAC experts that inspected Kenyan firms that manufacture confectioneries to repeat the whole inspection again.
"I can tell you for a fact that we know Kenya was not telling the truth on the duty free industrial sugar that was used to manufacture these sweets,”Mr Usaje told the Standard at an interview in Dar es Salaam.
“We will keeping charging the Kenyan manufacturers the 25 per cent levy until we are satisfied that EAC experts are thorough in their inspection,” he added.
While making the stern statements emphasising why Tanzania will keep charging Kenya the levy, Usaje produced a copy of the EAC inspection team report that Tanzania rejected and pointed out at the conclusions the team made, which Tanzania considers vague and indecipherable.
The concussions read in part: “products manufactured using industrial sugar when transferred to the EAC qualify for preferential treatment provided they meet the criteria set under EAC rules of Origin 2015 and any other conditions set under the EACCMA 2004.”
A conclusion that Usaje claims gave no pointer on whether Kenyan confectioneries specifically used the sugar under scrutiny or not.