Types of Taxes in Kenya and Rates



The following are taxes administered in Kenya and the rates for each category. The taxes are collected by KRA and submitted to the Treasury for budget allocation.

Direct Taxes

Income Tax Department administers various direct taxes, which have different rates:

a) Pay As You Earn (PAYE)

PAYE is a method of collecting tax at source from individuals in gainful employment. The employer deducts a certain amount of tax from his / her employee’s salary or wages on each payday then remit the tax to the Authority. This relieves the employee from paying taxes at the end of the year and shifts the responsibility to the employers.

Every individual who receives income is granted a tax credit or a tax relief from the Authority, this is known as Personal Relief. Insurance relief and mortgage relief are also available for eligible persons. The total tax credit is spread evenly during the charge year. At the end of the year, an individual will submit his self-assessment on total income received from various sources. Should the tax credit be lower than actual tax charged during the year, the balance of tax due will be payable.

b) Corporation Tax

Corporation tax is a form of income tax that is levied on companies. Resident companies are taxable at a rate of 30% w.e.f year of income 2000 while non – resident companies are taxable at a rate of 37.5%.w.e.f year of income 2000.

c) Withholding Tax

Withholding taxes are deducted at source from the following sources of income: Interest, dividends, royalties, management or professional fees, commissions, pension or retirement annuity, rent, appearance or performance fees for entertaining, sporting or diverting an audience.

Withholding tax rates 2000 2001 2002 2003
a) Resident withholding tax rates in respect of: –
i) Divided Income: 10% 10% 10% 10%
ii) Qualify Divided which is also the final tax 5% 5% 5% 5%
iii) Interest, discount, or original issue discount arising from:
Bearer instruments
(W.e.f 11th June, 1998) 25% 25% 25% 25%
Government Bearer Bond 15% 15% 15% 15%
iv) Qualifying interest arising from: –
Housing bonds: 10% 10% 10% 10%
Bearer Instruments (w.e.f 1st July, 1996) 20% 20% 20% 20%
In any other case (w.e.f 1st July 1996) 15% 15% 15%
v) Commission payable by Insurance Companies to:
Insurance Brokers 5% 5% 5% 5%
Insurance Agents 10% 10% 10% 10%
Presumptive Income Tax in respect of gross proceeds from certain specified Agricultural produce. W.e.f 1.1.2000 – 15.6.2000 2%
vii) Royalties 5% 5% 5% 5%
viii) Consultancy, Agency fees 2% 2% 10% 5%
Contractual fee 5% 3%
b) Non-resident withhold tax rates in respect of
i) Management and Professional Fees 20% 20% 20% 20% except commission to overseas agents for flower exports
ii) Royalties 20% 20% 20% 20%
iii) Rent, premium or similar considerations for the use or occupation:
Of immovable property: 30% 30% 30% 30%
Of movable property 15% 15% 15% 15% except aircraft leasing
iv) Dividend Income: 10% 10% 10% 10%
v) Interest other than ix) below: 121/2% 121/2% 15% 15%
vi) Pension or Retirement annuity 5% 5% 5% 5%
viii) An appearance or performance for purposes of diverting an audience 20% 20% 20% 20%
ix) Supporting, assisting or arranging an appearance 20% 20% 20% 20%
x) Management and Professional fee(see Para 5(2)(g) 9th schedule) 121/2% 121/2% 121/2% 121/2%
xi) Interest (see Para 5 (2)(h) 9th schedule): 10% 10% 10% 10%
xii) Interest on bearer instruments 20% 20% 20%

d) Advance Tax

Advance tax is applicable to Matatus and other Public Service Vehicles. It is not a final tax, but a tax partly paid in advance before a public service vehicle or a commercial vehicle is registered or licensed.

The current rates are:

  • For vans, pickups, trucks and lorries Kshs.1, 500 per ton of load capacity per year or Kshs.2, 400 whichever is higher.
  • For saloons, station wagons, mini-buses, buses and coaches, Kshs.60 per passenger capacity per month or Kshs.2, 400 whichever is higher



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