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April 16, 2020
Botswana announces tax measures to mitigate impact of COVID-19
On 2 April 2020, in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Botswana’s Ministry of Finance and Economic Development issued a press release informing the public of some of the measures taken by Government to mitigate against the effects of COVID-19:
1. COVID-19 (Corona Virus) Pandemic Relief Fund (the Fund)
The Government has established a Fund to which individuals, the corporate world and organizations are encouraged to contribute. Contributions to the Fund will not qualify as deductible expenditure for tax purposes.
2. Wage subsidy
The objective of the wage subsidy is to assist businesses to retain employees during the COVID-19 lock-down period. The Botswana Unified Revenue Service (BURS) will administer the wage subsidy scheme and the key measures of the wage subsidy scheme include:
Further clarification from BURS on how the scheme will be implemented will be forthcoming. However, assistance will be offered to businesses regardless of whether they owe tax to BURS provided there are no retrenchments due to COVID-19.
3. Tax concessions
The following tax concessions will be available for tax-compliant businesses adversely affected by COVID-19:
For guidance, visit BURS website at www.burs.org.bw/.
For additional information with respect to this Alert, please contact the following:
Ernst & Young Advisory Services (Pty) Ltd, Gaborone
Ernst & Young Advisory Services (Pty) Ltd., Africa ITTS Leader, Johannesburg
Ernst & Young LLP (United Kingdom), Pan African Tax Desk, London
Ernst & Young LLP (United States), Pan African Tax Desk, New York