2017/18 BUDGET: Beer, Cigarettes, Gaming Taxes Increased

Bars, clubs and beer consumers have a reason to worry, especially with the 2017/18 budget specifications.

High Excise duty has been introduced on the aforementioned items, implying a price increase when implemented.

According to Finance Minister Matia Kasaija, there will be a 60% tax increase on imported beer, and a Beer 30% tax increase on local beer materials.

“Madam Speaker, the Excise Duty Act has been amended to introduce specific rates on beer and soft drinks that are equivalent to the current ad valorem rates,” said Matia Kasaija.

“This will ease administration and reduce time and money spent in disputes especially as regards the cost, insurance and freight (CIF) value of imports,” he added.

Furthermore, Gaming houses and gamblers will experience a 15% tax increase. Gamers are expected to remit 15% of their bounty to the Uganda revenue authority.

“Lotteries and Gaming Tax has been rationalized by imposing withholding tax on winnings in order to prevent evasion,” said Matia Kasaija.

“This will deal with under-declaration of tax returns by some gaming houses claiming high winnings by gamblers,” he added.


Smokers too, will feel the pinch, especially with the increase on the excise duty.

“Madam Speaker, as part of the campaign to reduce consumption of cigarettes, Parliament approved an increase in excise duty of cigarettes as follows,” a relaxed Kasaija said.

  1. i) locally manufactured soft cap from Shs 50,000/= to Ushs 55,000/= per 1000 sticks and imported soft cap from Shs 50,000/= to Ushs 75,000/= per 1000 sticks; and
  2. ii) locally manufactured hinge lid from from Shs 75,000 to Ushs 80,000/= per 1000 sticks and imported hinge lid from Shs 75,000 to Ushs 100,000/= per 1000 sticks.
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