By Getrude Matayo
Kenya Revenue Authority’s collections for the year 2019/20 financial year, grew by 1.7 percent in spite of the economic challenges brought about by the Covid-19 pandemic but still missed the initial target by 275 billion shillings.
In a statement on Thursday, KRA said that in spite of the difficult operating economic environment brought about by health crisis, the revenue collection for the year July 2019 to June 2020 reached a new record with 1.607 trillion shillings collected compared to 1.607 trillion shillings collected in the previous year.
According to KRA Commissioner General Mr. Githii Mburu, the performance is favorable and matches the prevailing economic indicators, especially the projected GDP growth of between 1.5 and 2.3 percent in 2020.
Mburu said that KRA recorded a performance rate of 97.9 percent reaching a new record.
“KRA collected other monies including Agency Fees amounting to Sh97.114 billion. This is revenue collected on behalf of other government agencies mainly at the ports of entry. They include Road Maintenance Levy, Airport Revenue, Aviation Revenue, and Petroleum Development Fund amongst other levies” Said Githii Mburu.
Compared to the initial tax projections as unveiled in the budget, the taxman has fallen short by about 275 billion shillings and this explains why the government has not slowed down its borrowing spree.
With a performance rate of 98.6 percent against the target, the exchequer revenue grew by 2.2 percent with a collection of Sh1.510 trillion compared to 1.477 trillion shillings collected in the 2018/19 financial year.
The PAYE Tax grew by 2.0 percent marking a drop from average growth of 11.0 percent recorded between July 2019 and February 2020.
Mr. Mburu also said that the slow growth was driven by a decline in employment rate in the fourth quarter emanating from measures taken by mainly private firms to reduce operating costs.
“This performance is mainly attributed to the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, which contributed to the decline of production of excisable products like cigarettes, spirits, keg beer and non-keg beer,” Said Mburu