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October headlines from the world of indirect tax

As we enter the final quarter of 2023, many tax authorities continue to impose new rates and rules on a range of goods and services.

Meanwhile, many more announcements are being made regarding changes due to be implemented in the new year.

Here’s our latest round-up of VAT updates that have been confirmed so far in October:


VAT and customs duties are no longer levied on boats and yachts registered in The Bahamas. Previously, both taxes were applied at 10% each.


VAT on products related to agriculture, forestry and livestock farming will be reduced to 13%, while a new rate of 4% will be introduced for additional specific goods and services.


Legislative changes have been passed in 18 states to ensure the introduction of GST at 28% on online gaming, horse racing and casinos from 1st October.


The temporary VAT cut on gas has been extended until 31st December 2024. It means gas will continue to be taxed at 5% for a further three months. The reduced rate was introduced in 2021.


A proposal has been made by the National Treasury to increase Kenya’s VAT rate to 18% to bring it in line with other East African Community member states. Kenya’s standard rate is currently set at 16%.


Draft measures have been approved by the Latvian cabinet to increase the threshold at which businesses must register for VAT from €40,000 to €50,000.


The government has announced a new reduced rate of 12% has been created and will apply to certain services, such as hiring of pleasure boats, healthcare services that are not exempt and management of credit guarantees. It will come into effect on 1st January 2024.


A ruling by the Court of Appeal in Den Bosch has deemed alcoholic drinks served during intervals in Dutch theatres are subject to VAT at the reduced rate.


The federal government has announced it will waive VAT on diesel for six months.


The temporary 0% VAT rate on essential food items has been extended until the end of the year.


New draft legislation has been proposed by the Romanian Ministry of Finance for the introduction of mandatory real-time reporting and e-invoicing from 1st January 2024 and 1st July 2024 respectively.

South Africa

Economist Azar Jammine has predicted the South African government may soon be forced to increase the country’s VAT rate in the latest blow to consumers.


Multiple simplifications and small changes have been made to the Slovakian VAT Act to bring it into line with the EU’s VAT Directive and ensure compliance with recent rulings made in the European Court of Justice.


A number of VAT reductions have been introduced in recent months as Turkey looks to reduce the effect of price increases on consumers. Items such as certain restaurant services, land and seeds have all been the subject of lower rates.


Zambian authorities have included plans in the 2024 Budget to tackle VAT fraud by introducing e-invoicing. The aim is to prevent taxpayers using fake input invoices and therefore ensure only registered businesses are able to reclaim VAT.