Yesterday, Safaricom announced that they had reviewed their prices for services that they offer which was due to the Finance Act 2018 which added a number of provisions. This Act increased the excise duty tax on voice, SMS and data to 15%, up from 10% and now we got to see how it affects pricing on these services.
This is the new pricing structure of voice calls, SMS and data after the revision and they are effective today.
|Current Price (Kshs)
|New Price (Kshs)
|Voice (Peak Time)
|Voice (Off Peak)
Inferring from the table, you’ll now be charged Kshs 4.3 per minute when you make phone calls during peak time up from Kshs 4 but the off peak rates are not that significant as they are only up by 20 cents. Off data bundle pricing is also up by 30 cents just like the off peak phone call pricing and now sending texts will be 10 cents more expensive each.
The upward change in pricing looks rather minuscule in percentage terms, but you’d be surprised how much this translates due to the sheer volume of how these services are used.
According to the latest CA report, Safaricom did over 8.4 billion minutes a quarter, which if you do the math, translates to a lot of money collected as tax. Safaricom also recorded over 14 billion SMS being sent across its network so that 10 cent charge per text will translate to huge sums easily. Adding all that up and you will infer that the government will be cashing in on this new tax regime quite soon and factoring that this is being applied to the whole industry.