The Rwandan parliament has today unanimously passed a bill on exemption of double taxation on commodities exchanged between Rwanda and Morocco. Parliament urged Rwandans to start investing in Morocco.
The bill approving bilateral agreement between Rwanda and Morocco signed in Kigali on 19/10/2016, to revise the tax regime on commodities and investment tax was presented by Zeno Mutimura.
The bill also proposed measures to ensure that there is no tax evasion and placed a fixed taxation on investment dividends (8 percent) and investment services (10 percent), which the parliament said was considerable.
Members of Parliament however questioned how Rwanda will benefit from this bilateral agreement taking into consideration that Rwanda has no investments in Morocco.
“This agreement is good since the Moroccan will give our people jobs and bring business here; but it is one sided- how will Rwandans benefit since we don’t have any businesses in morocco nor exports,” one lawmaker Gastone Rwaka asked.
In response Mutimura said, “Rwandans have opened their doors to start business in Morocco and there is grace period of not being taxed whenever an investor comes in a country. It is now a challenge for (Rwandans) to start opening manufacturing plants and export to Morocco.”
The parliament is doing its final corrections and translation of the bill before it is approved by cabinet this year.
Last year Morocco and Rwanda signed 21 hot deals of projects during a historic visit by Morocco’s King Mohammed VI- who was in the country for a 3-day state visit.
At the Second Edition of African Business Connect Eastern and Southern Africa,in April 2017, Rwanda Development Board (RDB) said Morocco’s investment in Rwanda is worth $100 million, related to 23 agreements last year.
Among others, the Moroccan OCP group, the largest producer of phosphates, will start manufacturing industrial fertilizers in June this year in Kigali; COPA Pharma will set up shop at the Kigali Special Economic Zone and Moroccan Construction Company will soon start an affordable housing project.
The Moroccan King himself has invested $41 million in acquisition of 76.19% shares in Cogebanque-a commercial bank that was owned by Rwandan shareholders.