Safaricom contributes 6.5% to Kenya’s GDP

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Safaricom, the most profitable telecommunications company in East Africa added 6.5 percent to Kenya’s economy through direct and indirect means in the last financial year. The company posted a pre-tax profit of KSh91.9 billion in the year to March 2019, of which income tax payment amounted to KSh28.5 billion.

The mobile operator topped the list of the highest tax payer in Kenya for seven consecutive years from 2007 to 2014 before KRA changed their rewarding system. Safaricom still pays the highest taxes for any listed company. According to a press statement issued by Safaricom shortly after their 2019 results announcement, the company paid a total of KSh698.5 billion in fees, duties, and taxes to the government since it began operating in 2000.

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Safaricom has evolved from a purely telecommunications firm to the current status of a tech giant which offers different services like; data, money transfer, digital lending, E-commerce, and voice. Its mobile payment platform –Mpesa – has been credited with transforming the lives of many Kenyans.

While explaining the significance of Mpesa to Kenyans, CEO Bob Collymore said, “[It] has proved that even the most basic feature phone can be turned into a lifeline.”

In January 2019, Safaricom launched Fuliza, the world’s first mobile-based overdraft service. The platform is expected to boost business activities in Kenya by enabling traders to complete transactions they previously could not complete due to limited funds.

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