Smartphones and SIM Cards in Kenya are bound to get more expensive this month, thanks to The Finance Act 2022. The Act has imposed a 10 percent excise duty on the importation of cellular phones. This is besides KES 50 excise duty on every imported ready-to-use SIM card.
The government will calculate the new duty based on the cost of the mobile phones ordered into the country and other taxes and levies. Users who are trying to replace or register a new mobile phone line will have to pay a higher fee.
Smartphones and SIM Cards To Cost More In Kenya
Data from the Communications Authority of Kenya shows that there were 60.1 million mobile phones in Kenya by March of this year.
“Excise duty on the importation of cellular phones shall be at 10 percent of the excisable value,” reads the Act signed into law last week.
Safaricom charges Sh50 for replacement and fresh SIM listing. Its competitors, such as Airtel and Telkom, do not charge for new SIM subscriptions. They will all definitely adjust these prices upwards starting 15th July 2022. End consumers will face a price increase that will exceed just 10 percent because VAT will also be added.
In a social media post, Safaricom has announced its changes already.
“The Government of Kenya has implemented a KSh. 50 excise tax on SIM cards and a 10% excise tax on imported phones as part of the Finance Act 2022. In addition, the East African Community has applied a 25% import duty on phones as part of the Common External Tariff.”
Effective 15th July 2022, Safaricom will be reviewing their SIM card pricing to KSh. 50 + KSh. 50 airtime first top up to include the excise tax. Phone prices will be adjusted to include the 10% excise tax and 25% import duty as existing stock levels are replaced with new stock on which the new taxes apply.
We will be looking at all price changes in the coming days from all telcos and keep you updated.