Budget 2019: Borrowers, gamblers biggest losers

Borrowers seem to be the biggest losers in this year’s budget after Treasury Cabinet Secretary Henry Rotich proposed to repeal section 33B of the Banking Act 2016 giving banks the leeway to determine interest rates on loans.

Rotich argues that this will unlock credit for Small, Medium-Sized Enterprises and the private sector.

Gamblers, consumers of alcoholic drinks and tobacco products are the biggest losers after the government proposed to increase taxes.

According to CS Rotich, access to credit by the private sector and SMEs has been hampered by the cap interest rates.

The CS said the country needed to raise revenue up to the tune of Ksh 2.1 trillion to finance the budget, and in doing so; he slapped 15 per cent excise duty on alcoholic beverages and tobacco products.

This according to Rotich is expected to help boost excise revenues.

Gambling activities were also on the receiving end after the Cabinet Secretary proposed to introduce excise duty on betting activities at the rate of ten per cent of the amount staked.

Those in the boda-boda and tuk-tuk transport service were also not spared after Rotich introduced new insurance proposals aimed at covering the riders, passengers and even pedestrians.


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