Frequently asked questions - Uganda VAT
What is VAT?
VAT is the abbreviation of Value Added Tax. VAT is generally chargeable on taxable supplies of goods or services sold by a taxable person. A taxable person is a person who is VAT registered (or who is required to be VAT registered) in Uganda.
It applies to most goods and services supplied for use or consumption in Uganda. VAT is a consumption tax because it is ultimately borne by the final consumer.
Who must pay VAT?
Generally, VAT is invoiced by the supplier that is selling taxable goods or services and collected from the customer. Subsequently, the supplier declares the VAT collected on sales and remits the VAT to the Uganda Revenue Authority (“URA”).
Zoom is registered for VAT in Uganda as a non-resident supplier of electronically supplied services. As such, Zoom is required to collect VAT on supplies to customers not registered for VAT in Uganda and remit such VAT to the URA.
If you are a business customer, you should provide your Tax Identification Number (“TIN”) to Zoom (see ‘How do I enter my TIN?’ below for details on how to do this). If the TIN is valid and indicates that you are registered for VAT in Uganda based on a real-time validation with the URA, then no VAT will be charged on the supplies made to you by Zoom. If you do not have a TIN or have a TIN but are not registered for VAT, then VAT will be charged on the supplies made to you by Zoom.
Why am I being charged VAT?
Video conferencing and telecommunication services supplied by Zoom fall within the definition of taxable supplies chargeable to VAT as per the VAT rules relating to electronically supplied services provided by non-resident suppliers. Zoom is therefore required to charge VAT on such supplies at the standard rate of VAT provided the supplies are made to non-VAT registered customers in Uganda.
What is a Tax Identification Number (TIN)?
A Tax Identification Number (TIN) is a 10-digit personal and unique tax registration number in Uganda that is issued by the tax authority and that is used to identify a taxpayer. Zoom is required to validate customer TINs against the URA database in real-time using an Application Programming Interface (“API”) set up by the URA.
How do I enter my TIN?
Note: Starting July 17, 2023, certain account owners and admins will notice a dedicated Plans and Billing section within their ADMIN menu.
To provide your TIN, please complete the following steps:
- Sign in to the Zoom web portal.
- In the navigation menu, click Account Management then Billing.
- Click the Billing Information tab.
- Under Sold to Contact, choose to edit the TIN (which appears after the Sold to Contact address field).
- Enter your TIN.
- Click Save.
Zoom performs periodic validation checks of customer TINs to ensure that the TIN remains valid. If, during these periodic validations, it is identified that your TIN is no longer valid, Zoom may automatically update your account so that future invoices are subject to VAT. Where this happens, VAT will be charged on all future invoices until such time that a valid TIN is provided. To provide an updated TIN refer to the above steps.
You are required to notify us if there is a change to your VAT registration status.
Does Zoom have a TIN?
Yes, Zoom is registered for VAT in Uganda as a non-resident supplier of electronically supplied services and Zoom’s TIN will be shown on the invoice it issues to you.
How is Zoom determining which customers VAT applies to?
If a customer's ‘Sold To’ location is in Uganda, and the customer has not provided a valid Ugandan TIN that indicates they are registered for VAT in Uganda, Zoom will charge VAT on its invoices issued to you.
This information is subject to cross-referencing against other data to verify that the ‘Sold To’ country is accurate.
It is your responsibility as a customer to ensure that your ‘Sold To’-address is accurate.
Are there any special exemptions or zero-rating applicable for charities or other business organizations under which VAT may not be charged?
Zoom is required to charge VAT on supplies to customers in Uganda that are not registered for VAT, regardless of their status. However certain customers (such as diplomatic missions or Public International Organizations) may be eligible to apply to the URA for a refund of the VAT charged by Zoom. In this case, impacted customers are required to apply directly to the URA for such a refund.
Are there any VAT obligations for me as a customer?
If you have provided a valid TIN that indicates you are registered for VAT in Uganda to Zoom, no VAT will be charged on the supplies made to you. However, you may be required to self-assess the VAT due under the “reverse charge” mechanism.
Please note, in respect of supplies to customers in Uganda that provide a valid TIN that indicates they are registered for VAT in Uganda, Zoom is required to report transactional information to the URA on a quarterly basis consisting of:
- TIN of the recipient
- Date of the transaction
- Nature of the supply
- Value of the transaction
- Invoice number
There is no VAT reporting obligation for a customer who is not registered for VAT in Uganda. However, Zoom will charge VAT on its supplies to you.
Is Zoom required to issue electronic or fiscalised tax invoices?
Non-resident suppliers of electronically supplied services are not required to issue fiscalised invoices (e-invoices/e-receipts) through the URA Electronic Fiscal Receipting and Invoicing System (EFRIS).
For supplies made to customers that are not registered for VAT in Uganda i.e., B2C supplies, non-resident suppliers are required to issue simplified tax invoices.
What if I have a TIN and forget to enter it?
The TIN can be entered at any time. If entered before the next invoice, Zoom will not charge VAT on the next invoice or future invoices issued to you. If no valid TIN is entered at the time the next invoice is issued, VAT will be charged until a valid TIN that indicates you are registered for VAT in Uganda is entered. No retrospective adjustments will be made to invoices where you did not provide a valid TIN that indicates you are registered for VAT in Uganda; however, it may be possible for customers to obtain a refund of the VAT paid to Zoom by applying directly to the URA.
Decision tree – My “Sold To” address is Uganda; will I be charged VAT?
Every customer is unique and so are their specific tax circumstances. The above-stated information should not be considered as tax advice, but as a general overview of relevant VAT rules in Uganda. Zoom cannot provide you with tax advice for your individual situation, and therefore we strongly recommend speaking with a professional tax advisor for tailored advice.
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