1. What is Digital Service Tax (DST)?
    Digital Service Tax (DST) is payable on income derived or accrued in Kenya from
    services offered through a digital marketplace.
  2. What is a Digital Market Place?
    A digital marketplace is a platform that enables direct interaction between buyers
    and sellers of goods and services through electronic means.
  3. When is the Effective date for DST?
    Digital Service Tax was introduced in the Finance Act 2020, and becomes effective
    from 1st January 2021.
  4. What is the rate of DST?
    1.5% of the gross transaction value:
    a). In the case of the provision of digital services, the payment received as consideration
    for the services; and
    b). In the case of a digital marketplace, the commission or fee paid to the digital
    marketplace provider for the use of the platform
    Note: The gross transaction value is exclusive of VAT.
  5. How will KRA collect DST?
    Digital service providers operating in the digital market place in Kenya will be
    required to file a DST return and make payment for the tax due, on or before the
    20th day of the following month that the digital service was offered.
  6. What is the due date for DST?
    DST is due on a monthly basis, on or before the 20th day of the following month
    that the digital service was offered.
  7. Who pays DST?
    Resident and Non – Resident:
    i). Digital service providers
    ii). Digital market place providers, or
    iii). Their appointed tax representatives (in the case of non-resident digital service
    providers or digital marketplace providers without a permanent establishment
    in Kenya).
  8. What constitutes:
    a). Resident
    b). Permanent Establishment
    For taxation purposes, a) a resident is in case of:
    i). Individual
    a). An individual entity with a permanent home in Kenya and was present in the
    country in the year of income under review.
    b). An individual with no permanent home in Kenya but has been in the country for
    183 days or more in the year of income under review.
    c). An individual with no permanent home in Kenya but has been in the country for an
    average of 122 days in the year of income under review and two other preceding
    ii). Non-individuals {Company)
    On the other hand, a company is deemed to be resident in Kenya where:
    a). The company is registered under Kenyan laws.
    b). The Cabinet Secretary for National Treasury and Planning declares the company
    as registered in the country.
    c). The management and control of the company is domiciled in the country
    (b) Permanent Establishment (PE)
    A non-resident person with a fixed place of business in Kenya which has
    existed for a period of 6 months or more or as determined under the
    Double Tax Agreement (DTA)
  9. Is DST a final tax?
    For resident digital service providers, DST can be considered to be an advance
    tax, which means that at the point of filing the annual income tax return, you will
    be able to offset/deduct the DST paid during the year from the total tax due at
    the end of the year.
    For non-resident digital service providers without a permanent establishment in
    Kenya, DST will be a final tax.
  10. If I already pay WHT on a digital service, will I still pay DST?
    DST shall not apply to income that has already been subjected to withholding tax
  1. How does one determine whether the digital services have been
    provided in Kenya?
    A digital service provider shall be subject to digital service tax if they provide or
    facilitate provision of a service to a user who is located in Kenya.
  2. How does one determine that the user is located in Kenya?
    If any of the following parameters are met:i).
    Payment for the digital services is made using a credit or debit facility provided by any
    financial institution or company in Kenya.
    ii). The user accesses the digital interface from a terminal (computer, tablet or mobile
    phone) located in Kenya.
    iii). The supplies or digital services are acquired using an internet protocol address
    registered in Kenya or an international mobile phone country code assigned
    to Kenya.
    iv). The user has a business, residential or billing address in Kenya.
  3. Does DST apply to those selling goods via digital or social media
    DST is applicable to digital services, thus for goods sold on digital or social
    media platforms the suppliers are required to declare the income earned under
    the self-assessment regime provided under the relevant Tax Laws.
  4. Individuals and companies use my website to sell their products, am I
    liable to Digital Service Tax?
    Yes, DST is applicable on the commission of fee charged for the use of the
    platforms enabling direct interaction between buyers and sellers through a digital
    marketplace, website, or other online applications.
  5. Under the DST Regulations, what is the scope of taxable services?
    a). downloadable digital content including downloadable mobile applications, e-books
    and films;
    b). over-the-top services including streaming television shows, films, music, podcasts
    and any form of digital content;
    c). sale of, licensing of, or any other form of monetising data collected about Kenyan
    users which has been generated from the users’ activities on a digital marketplace;
    d). provision of a digital marketplace;
    e). subscription-based media including news, magazines and journals;
    f). electronic data management including website hosting, online data warehousing,
    file-sharing and cloud storage services;
    g). electronic booking or electronic ticketing services including the online sale of tickets;
    h). provision of search engine and automated held desk services including supply of
    customised search engine services;
    i). online distance training through pre-recorded media or e-learning including online
    courses and training; and
    j). any other service provided through a digital marketplace.
  6. There are many overseas companies operating in the digital market
    place in Kenya, but do not have physical offices locally. How will they
    account for DST?
    A non-resident without a permanent establishment (overseas companies) who
    provides digital services in Kenya may register under the simplified tax registration
    framework via the iTax portal;
    The User guide for the simplified registration process is accessible on the KRA
    Website using this link;—DST-NONRESIDENT-
    Upon successful registration on iTax, the digital service provider will be able to file
    the tax return and make payment for the DST due within the stipulated timelines.
    In the event a non-resident without a permanent establishment (overseas
    company) chooses not to register through the simplified registration framework,
    they shall appoint a tax representative. A tax representative shall be responsible
    for performing any tax obligations required, including the submission of returns
    and the payment of taxes.
  7. In which currency should the tax payments be made?
    The tax due will be paid in Kenyan currency (Kenya shillings) and deposited into
    the KRA account of the authorized Kenyan banks.