Gov’t Asked to Reduce Taxes on Imported Medical Equipment

Wakiso District | THE BLACK EXAMINER | The Government of Uganda is being urged to enforce consistent tax exemptions on imported medical equipment. Dr. Henry K. Lukwago made this call during the launch of the George William Kiggundu International Hospital (GWKIH) in Kakiri town, along Hoima Road, as a tribute to his 97-year-old father.

Dr. Lukwago, a Ugandan physician and businessman based in the United States, emphasized the challenges he faced, including paying significant taxes on hospital equipment, despite VAT and Import Duty exemptions under the East African Community Common External Tariff. He highlighted that the hospital often imports medical equipment from the USA and India to maintain high-quality services.

He also mentioned that clearance procedures through Uganda Revenue Authority (URA) at Nakawa were often delayed due to bureaucracy and technicalities, and URA imposed high taxes on medical equipment, even holding state-of-the-art equipment in their warehouses.

Dr. Lukwago appealed to the government, represented by the Minister of State for Trade, Hon. David Bahati, to resolve these issues. The JWK International Hospital is part of Lukwago’s Angels Mission Home Care Services based in the US.

Dr. Andrew Katumba, the hospital director, explained the hospital’s plans to become the country’s primary treatment center for renal-related complications and mentioned the installation of ten dialysis machines to serve kidney failure patients.

Minister Bahati, in response, assured that the government does not levy taxes on medical equipment and promised to address the concerns raised. He also expressed gratitude to Dr. Lukwago for his community contributions and launched a 4-day medical camp providing free health services to the local population.

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