What is in it for me. That’s the big question on the minds of most youth. And rightly so as they make the larger proportion of the population.
We can as well say that the budget proposal 2016/17 comes as a relief for some youth but others might disagree as the Cabinet Secretary, Mr Henry Rotich went ahead to propose to levy taxes on products such as kerosene which were initially tax exempt. Cosmetic products have also been affected as they will experience a 10% taxation. Here are some highlights of the Budget 2016/17 which are likely to benefit the youth…
Fuel & Gas
One of the most welcome news in this budget was the tax exemption of LPG Liquid Petroleum gas. This move is meant to encourage the public to use LPG. However, the CS proposed introduction of excise duty on kerosene at 7,205 per 1000 liters. This is more than unsatisfactory to most Kenyans. Also, a tax reduction of fuel efficient stoves from the original 10% to 5% was announced
The CS also has proposed to increase the Road Maintenance Levy from KSh 12 per litre to KSh 18 per litre. The reasoning behind this was that a decrease in fuel prices does not affect the local ‘Mwananchi’ who uses the buses. In that drop in fuel prices do not necessarily mean a reduction in the cost of transport.
If you are prospecting to buy a second hand car, then you should be rejoicing. The CS has proposed to re-introduce the 20 % import duty based on the value of the vehicle rather than the flat rate of Ksh 200,000 for every vehicle. This means that initially if a car was worth Ksh 500,000 it would automatically attract a KSH 200,000 import duty. But now a car worth 500,000 will be charged KSH 100,000 import duty.
Youth & Women Empowerment.
The CS has also looked out for the interests of women and the youth in the society.
Uwezo Fund that provides the youth and women groups with low-interest loans received Sh1.6 billion.
Schools received Sh1.6 billion which is primarily meant for the upgrade. Seeing that there are still schools that have classes conducted under trees.
Talented youth in sports and Arts will see Sh1.5 billion go towards the promotion of sports and cultural activities.
Orphans and the vast number of children who are in children’s homes across the country will be allocated Sh7.5 billion. Sh7.5 billion has also been assigned to the elderly to cater to their wellbeing.
Internally displaced persons still in camps can now have a hope of resettlement and reformative justice having been allocated Sh6 billion.
Kenyans who cannot afford quality health care in private hospitals including pregnant mothers are set to benefit from Sh4.3 billion meant for free health care.
Employment & Industry
The CS has proposed a tax rebate for employers who employ ten graduates leaving universities in a period of 6 years.
The local steel industry should see an increase in business as the CS introduced new duty rate to restrict importation of steel, aluminium and iron. This will encourage local industries and create jobs.
The CS also proposed a tax exemption on the fee charged for entry into parks. Tour operator’s commissions also to be exempted from VAT.
Finally, the CS proposed that Insurance claims should be paid within 30 days and not the usual 90 days. This is sure some good news for insurance policy holders.