Uganda Launches Social Media Tax

July 2, 2018 Taxation in Uganda

social media tax ugandaKAMPALA – Uganda’s social media tax has come into effect, blocking access for anyone who has not paid a new daily tax.

Over the weekend the government of Uganda launched its new tax on the use of social media and mobile communication platforms.

From July 1st, any mobile users in Uganda who had not paid the new tax was barred by their service provider from accessing media platforms such as Twitter, Whatsapp, Skype, and Facebook.

The tax is levied at a rate of UGX 200 per day, and must be paid via an electronic payment system to the mobile service provider in order to unlock the social platforms.

The government claims that the new tax will raise funds to be used for free education, healthcare, and roading.

However, opponents of the tax are claiming that the system is stifling communication within Uganda.

Some mobile users in Uganda have already begun to bypass the new system by utilizing VPNs, which hide their activity from service providers, and allow them unfettered access to social platforms.

Along with the social media tax, the government also enacted a 1 percent tax on mobile money platforms, which are a popular alternative to traditional banking services in Uganda.