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Tired of the high cost of living? It’s about to get worse, but you can stop that


A woman wearing a mask moves her shopping cart December 3, 2020 in a Trader Joe's supermarket in New York City.

Today, inflation or the cost of living is the one thing Kenyans hate even more than being forced to queue for Huduma Namba, fuel or even water.

Everything is expensive these days, food, gas…even the now popular Papa Freddie Ngamwaya has run out of people to con.

The only silver lining to the prices going up is that it's easier to start conversations in social circles or break the ice with your cab driver. All you need to say is “Hii economy manze

Jokes aside, the rise in the cost of living has been going through the roof on the back of a hike in fuel prices, high taxation as the government seeks to and external economic factors.


In just months basic food items such as maize flour, wheat flour, and cooking oil have increased by more than Sh250 combined, eroding the buying power of many Kenyans.

Even at supermarkets, sometimes shoppers are forced to forgo items during checkout because of budget constraints.

Kenyans are set to continue digging deeper into their pockets if the National Assembly passes the Finance Bill 2022 which has proposed increased taxes on excisable goods such as petroleum products, motorcycles, cosmetics and beauty products, jewellery, soft drinks, beer, wines and spirits, chocolate, and bottled water.

For example, if passed, importing a Boda Boda will now cost you thirteen thousand, four hundred and three in excise duty alone. That is 13% of the total cost.


The story is similar when it comes to beer which will cost 10% more in taxes, spirits - 20%, glass - 25% (both imported and locally produced), alcohol advertising fees will go up by15%, cosmetic and beauty products - 15%, soda by 10% and water by 10% as well.

Simply put, the cost of living is set to go even higher, and some companies will probably even have to close down.

Hidden in the countless pages is a rather interesting inclusion: The KRA Commissioner General, whose role is collection of taxes, is also going to have the sole power to decide who he can exempt from excise tax increases.

If you have any tax disputes, the proposed Finance Bill 2022 will require you to deposit 50% of the disputed tax amount when you appeal to the High Court.


Pressure is piling on MPs to reject the proposals that the Kenya Association of Manufacturers has also raised concerns about.

Citizens have also petitioned their MPs to reject the new tax changes or risk being voted out in the fast-approaching August General Elections.



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