Monday 19 April 2021
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Finance ministry exempts VAT on imports to farmers

By Staff Reporter

The finance ministry in response to a request by the NAU decided to exempt the importation of certain products from import VAT.  This decision is taken in cognisance of the prevailing drought that has farmers in a state of emergency.
This week, Jacqueline Gawanas on behalf of the Ministry of Finance, Customs and Excise signed a letter which declares a ruling made on 22 July 2019 by the Inland Revenue Department.
Farmers who seek to qualify for the tax breaks should provide proof of registration at the Meat Board of Namibia whether as a commercial or communal farmer with the Meat Board or another legally recognised registration. Farmers should furthermore notify the ministry about the impending importation at least three days before the goods reach the border, to allow ‘timeous customs clearance’.
Farmers should provide an application letter with an invoice and a Namibian identification document attached to it, describing all the good that are being imported. This application should be handed in at the ministry or at the point of entry.
“Once an exemptions letter is approved it must be hand delivered to the ASYCUDA World functional office or emailed to the body in order for it (the exemptions letter) to be uploaded onto the Customs’ system to generate a code,” the letter instructs.
ASYCUDA is a computerised customs management system which covers most foreign trade procedures. The Ministry of Finance lays down additional requirements that should be adhered to, should farmers want to be exempted from VAT on these certain items: “farmers must ensure to adhere to all the requirements and regulations, i.e relevant import permits. Clearing agents should register entries three days in advance, as the application process can take up to five days.”
The VAT exemption does not apply retrospectively and does not apply to ‘special goods’ imported.
Retailers that import the same goods do not qualify for the exemption. Importers (farmers) may import from SACU and non SACU countries.
“The VAT exemption under rebate item 412.11 paragraph 2(g)(i) of Schedule V applies to the importing of roughage, Lucerne, grass-teff (or other wheat straw), oats straw/hay, maize hay, sorghum hay and silage.
Energy and protein concentrates such as cotton oil cake, sunflower oil cake, maize chop, wheat bran, soya oil cake, full fat soya, maize meal, whole maize kernels, molasses, wheat, barley, oats, sunflower hulls, soya hulls, whole cotton seed and maize bran.”
The VAT exemption only applies to individual and producers in all regions of Namibia who import directly for own use and not for re-selling.

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