Google to start charging 16% VAT on taxable goods and services in Kenya

Tech giant Google has announced it will introduce a 16% Value Added Tax (VAT) on some of its goods and services sold in Kenya from February 1, 2023. This follows the introduction of a new levy by the Kenyan government through the Digital Marketplace Supply (Amendment) Regulation, 2022.

Several international tech companies including Spotify and Netflix have also indicated that they will include the levy in their products and services beginning next month. This automatically raises the cost of these products and services, as the companies seek to collect the levy on behalf of the Kenyan government.

Google has already asked its customers to submit tax information, including their KRA PIN, to help comply with the new regulation.

“Due to new tax legislation in Kenya, starting February 1, 2023, Google will be required to charge a 16% tax on all taxable goods and services,” Google said in a statement.

“Please update your Kenya PIN number in your Google payments profile. Once updated, you should start seeing the PIN number on your Google invoices,” it added.

The Act makes it clear that the annual turnover threshold of KES 5 million for VAT registration will not apply to companies that sell digital services or supplies that are brought in from other countries. This means that all digital suppliers, no matter how much money they make each year, will have to sign up for VAT and report it.

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Simon W Nderitu

Simon is a tech enthusiast who keeps a close eye on emerging technologies, startups and the general business environment. You will often catch him totally immersed and drooling over Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, Virtual Reality, Augmented Reality, IoT and just about any other tech that promises to revolutionize the way we live. Send tips to

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