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Safaricom subscribers to pay more for voice call, SMS and data

A mobile subscriber uses two smart phones to share information. FILE PHOTO
A mobile subscriber uses two smart phones to share information. FILE PHOTO

Subscribers of mobile phone service provider Safaricom, will beginning Thursday midnight pay more for voice call, SMS and data services.

This is after the telco passed on the cost of a revised Excise Duty to its subscribers with increased rates for the mentioned services.

Subsequently, Safaricom subscribers will pay 30 cents more for voice calls and data and 10 cents more for Short Message Service (SMS) effective midnight October 18, 2018.

While making the announcement on Wednesday, the company’s Chief Executive Officer, Bob Collymore, said the increase is as a result of implementation of the 8 per cent VAT on petroleum products.

“As a result of the increased taxes passed in the Finance Act 2018, we wish to notify our customers that from midnight tonight, the 18th October 2018, our headline price for voice calls and data will increase by 30 cents and SMS by 10 cents,” Collymore said in a statement.

Mr Collymore said the recent changes to taxes affecting their services were passed through the Finance Act 2018.

ADDITIONAL TAXES

The Excise Duty tax applicable on Voice, SMS and Data services was increased from 10 percent to 15 percent. This is in addition to the prevailing Value Added Tax applicable to mobile services at the rate of 16 percent.

Collymore further said the mobile telco has been consulting the government on the impact, timing and exact nature of services that these taxes will affect.

He said the company has also reviewed prices for mobile data bundles, Fibre-To-The-Building (FTTB) and Fibre-To-The-Home (FTTH) to effect the new 15% Excise Duty tax on internet services.

“Additionally, we have also reviewed our prices for mobile data bundles, Fibre-To-The-Building (FTTB) and Fibre-To-The-Home (FTTH) to effect the new 15pc Excise Duty tax on internet services,” he said.

“We are aware of and regret the impact these additional taxes on our customers. It is our sincere hope that these changes will not affect the remarkable gains we have made in mobile phone and internet penetration in Kenya over the last two decades,” Collymore further said.

About the author

HILARY KIMUYU



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