KAMPALA — Sugar and Cement manufacturers, importers have been put on notice as Uganda Revenue Authority rolls out digital tax stamps.
Sugar and Cement are highly consumable products according to figures but the same reports indicate that they are equally highly duplicated.
According to a public notice, dealers in the two commodities have up to
to May 31, 2021, to clear stocks of the products that have no digital stamps.
Digital stamp is an electronic machine-readable mark stamped on the targeted/gazetted product to authenticate their origin, manufacturer and tax-payment status.
They come in different formats such as; the direct ink print mainly on bottled water, soda and beer, the short rectangular paper stamp on cigarettes, the round paper stamp on some bottled water, soda and beer brands, and the long rectangular paper stamp which goes over the top of wine/spirit bottles among others.
URA says the was Digital Tracking Solution (DTS) is also aimed at ensuring that the said products only go onto the market after being cleared for standards, taxes and origin.
The system jointly implemented by URA, and the Uganda National Bureau of Standards ensures quality standards, protects government revenue as well as genuine manufacturers from counterfeiters.
Violation of the regulation attracts a UGX.50 million penalty.
URA has since indicated that advised dealers in the two commodities to create space for the installation of the digital tax stamps equipment, to be ready to implement it in time.
All premises for manufacture or packaging of the above-gazetted goods must be registered for Excise Duty under the Excise Duty Act.
When the solution was first introduced, it faced some resistance with businesspeople unsuccessfully arguing that the government should bear the cost of installation, to avoid increasing the cost of doing business.
“Manufacturers and importers of the above goods are required to have adequate space and tools to facilitate affixing and activating the digital tax stamps on these products at their registered premises,” the statement says. The two products were gazetted in January but the implementation delayed to give the two parties time, and help the businesses avoid possible penalties.
“A taxpayer who fails to affix a tax stamp on goods is liable to pay a penal tax equivalent to double the tax due on goods or fifty million shillings, whichever is higher,” the statement adds. Each 50kg bag of cement will have a stamp bought at 135 Shillings, while cement bulkers will pay 60,000 Shillings per truck. The coat of the stamp on sugar will be UGX.39 per bag.