No More Ambuye N’tengeni-like Tragedies as MRA Rolls Out Excise Tax Stamps

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The Malawi Revenue Authority (MRA) has finally put into effect the Excise Tax Stamp regime, also referred to as Kalondola, to combat the consumption of hazardous products on the local market. 

This initiative, launched on May 1, 2024, extends the use of excise tax stamps from cigarettes to a broader range of taxable goods. 

Henry Ngutwa, the Deputy Commissioner General of MRA, addressed the media this past Friday, emphasizing that this system will significantly reduce the risks associated with dangerous and uncertified products. 

The introduction of tax stamps—fiscal markers applied to specific goods—is designed not only to ensure public safety by preventing the consumption of harmful products but also to protect local manufacturers by curtailing the smuggling of goods into Malawi. 

Ngutwa highlighted that the tax stamps will facilitate accurate declarations by local producers, thereby increasing government revenue, without introducing new taxes. 

He urged the business community not to use this measure as a pretext for unjustifiably raising product prices. 

The initial phase of this regime began with items such as tobacco cigarettes and various alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, with tax stamps priced between K12 and K32.

 A second phase, starting July 1, 2024, will expand to include bottled water, carbonated soft drinks, cereal-based drinks, energy drinks, fermented sweet tea, lotion, and glycerin. 

Additionally, MRA has allowed a three-month grace period for the sale of old stock without the new stamps, to help businesses transition smoothly. 

This policy aims to safeguard Malawian consumers and ensure the integrity of local products entering the market.

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