Kenyan VAT rates and VAT compliance
|Rate||Type||Which goods or services|
|16%||Standard||All other supplies of goods, services and imports|
|0%||Zero||Exports of goods and services; international passenger transport; certain petroleum supplies|
|0%||Exempt||Certain agricultural supplies; financial services; medical supplies; tour operator services; entrance to national parks; domestic passenger transport; medical; education and training; residential property; betting and gaming; domestic water|
|3%||Turnover Tax||Turnover Tax on any business below the VAT registration threshold|
Kenyan VAT compliance
The date on which VAT is due is known as the tax point or time of supply. In Kenya, this is the earliest of the following:
- When the goods or services are supplied
- Invoice issuance date
- Cash payments
- Customs clearance for imports
Split VAT payments
For business-to-government (B2G) transactions, the government body must withhold 6% of the VAT due to the commercial vendor. A number of larger financial institutions are also required to withhold VAT settlements. This is paid directly to the tax office
VAT registered businesses must issue VAT invoices with the following details:
- Name and address of suppliers
- Customer details
- Unique VAT number
- Description of goods or services provided
- Net, VAT and Gross price
Foreign currency VAT invoices are permitted. The exchange rate used may be from any major publicly quoted exchange rate. Simplified invoices may also be issued for small value transactions for B2B and B2C transactions.
VAT returns are due on a monthly basis. The return and related VAT due must be filed by the 20th of the following month. Returns are filed electronically. Where the VAT suffered exceeds the sales VAT, then the credit may be rolled over or a reclaim made.
VAT Recovery by non-residents
Foreign companies may not reclaim Kenyan VAT incurred unless they are VAT registered.
Latest Kenyan news
October 10, 2016
Kenya has reintroduced its withholding VAT, backdated it to 19 January 2016. The measure, designed to prevent VAT evasion...
June 12, 2015
The new 2015/16 budget for Kenya includes a number of VAT changes, including: Good in transit will be nil rated instead of exempt from VAT,...
November 22, 2014
Kenya has updated the guidelines on its withholding VAT regime. Withholding VAT was introduced in 2003 as an anti-fraud measure....