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MBABANE – Following the reduction of the Corporate Tax from 27.5 to 25 per cent, the Kingdom of Eswatini now ranked the second best in the SACU region.

In an interview with this publication, the Minister of Finance Neal Rijkenberg said investors, worldwide, look for opportunities to invest their money in jurisdictions that afford incentives, amongst which were low/reduced corporate income tax.

He said considering that, by reducing the rate to 25 per cent, the country was now ranked the second best in the Southern Africa Customs Union (SACU) region with the lowest rate being 22 per cent (Botswana), a number of investors were bound to consider relocating their businesses to Eswatini – primarily from the South Africa.

Rijkenberg said this rate reduction has placed the country as the next best investment destination resulting to additional benefits to the economy emanating from increased employment opportunities and ancillary benefits from sub-contract works, and other ripple effects from various industries across most sectors. He added that there was a variety of incentives on offer for investment attraction into the country offered through the Income Tax Order, 1975 as contained in Sections 14 and 69.  He said these included; initial allowances with respect to machinery, infrastructural and building.

The minister mentioned that another one was the Development Approval Order (DAO) which allowed for a 10 per cent rate granted to businesses that meet the qualifying criteria in various sectors of business. He added that the the tourism sector had also been recently added into the list of qualifying sectors. The minister mentioned that the effective date for the changes in the corporate tax was anticipated to be July 1, 2024 to allow for other legal processes to be finalised including gazetting of the amended Income Tax Order.

SACU Countries by Corporate Tax rates

Botswana - 22%,

Eswatini - 25 %

Lesotho - 25%

South Africa - 27%

 Namibia - 32%