Not very many people love paying taxes because it means sharing their income with the state, but a recent study by the World Bank reveals that Rwandans and their businesses love paying their taxes more than neighbors.
Ugandans come second, Tanzanians third followed by Burundians. Kenyans, according the report, are the least tax complaint people in the region.
The high rate of tax compliance in Rwanda is perhaps not just a culture, but has much to do with the easy with which people and businesses can settle their obligations—with just 17 payments annually. Burundi has 25, Uganda 31, Kenya 41 while Tanzania taxpayers have to make 48 payments in a year.
Rwandans pay nine different taxes, but pay VAT and social security contributions quarterly, resulting in fewer annual filings and payments for business compared to its regional peers. Complying with taxes takes only 134 hours a year in Rwanda, while it takes 340 in Kenya, the World Bank says.
Forecasts show slower growth by the global economy, inflation have risen slightly at home and quit significantly in Rwanda’s major trading partners in the regional but the economy remains strong.
The Rwanda franc too is has been wobbly of late, losing some of 3.9 per cent as of 27th September 2013 since December 2012 but that too won’t derail the road to 7.5 per cent growth rate that technocrats at the central bank and the ministry of finance forecast.
For the Governor of the central bank, John Rwangombwa, having grown by 6 per cent in the first quarter and 5.7 per cent in the second quarter, the economy will perform even better in the last half as more aid flows in.
Communication is becoming cheaper and easily accessible. Not only can one use a mobile phone for voice calls or send text messages, soon the gadgets will be used to access internet free of charge.
All that you need is get to designated places such as King Faisal Hospital, Nyabugogo Taxi Park, restaurants, commercial buildings and even public transport buses to have access to wi-fi and surf the internet all day long at no cost.
This is courtesy of City of Kigali, internet service providers and government agencies like Rwanda Utilities Regulatory Agency and Rwanda Development Board, as well as the Rwanda Hotel and Restaurant Association.
New Rwf500 note
A new Rwf500 note with improved and stronger security features has been printed and released by the central bank. It will be used alongside the old type that will be gradually withdrawn from circulation.
The 135 x 72mm note has a watermark of the coat of arms of the Republic of Rwanda and an electrotype element representing the logo ‘BNR’ below, a dark blue dominant colour. The front side has three dairy cows while at the back are four school children using computers.
About 10,000 needy students who had been scrapped off the list of beneficiaries of state bursary have been reinstated following a successful petition.
Some 13,216 students appealed against a decision to remove them from the scheme after evaluators saw them financially able to meet the cost of their education.
However, a revaluation exercise found 10,298 as being poor and therefore deserving full bursary coverage and living allowance.