Zambia is targeting to raise $22 million annually after the implementation of a new tax regime that will tax internet phone calls, VoIP.
On August 13, the Zambia cabinet approved on a $0.03 daily tariff charged on VoIP calls. The country’s Transport and Communications Minister, Brian Mushimba said the government had taken into account the concerns put forward by telecom companies opposing the move.
He went on to say a “quick realization by government that that is a huge revenue loss that comes with internet calls.”
The Information Minister, Dora Siliya announced the cabinet’s approval to tax VoIP calls saying the move was aimed at protecting jobs in the telecommunication sector. Zambia has three telecom operators; the state-owned Zamtel, MTN, and Bharti Airtel.
Siliya further said that 80% of Zambians use OTT apps like WhatsApp, Skype, and Viber to connect with family and friends. As they migrate from making conventional telephone calls, it means the telecom companies are losing revenues. While at the same time, the government is losing revenue since they cannot get much tax from the profits made by the telecoms.
The said levy would be charged via …read more