The Covid-19 outbreak in Ethiopia and in many areas of the East Africa has led to a public health emergency and unforeseen challenges for businesses. It has also led to uncertainties, including from a tax/legal perspective.
Furthermore, as you may know, the Council of Ministers of Ethiopia has recently approved the State of Emergency Regulation in accordance with the Proclamation that declared a state of emergency in the Country. This regulation outlines different types of provisions, in addition to the measures already issued by the Ethiopian Government and Authorities in the last weeks.
To shield the economy from the harsh consequences of the spread of Covid-19, the most recent actions are oriented to easing the burden carried by taxpayers. To do so the Ministry of Finance has enacted a new tax directive that allows for the cancellation of tax debts.
You no doubt are asking yourself many questions, especially in light of the measures being issued by the Ethiopian government, so we have set up a multidisciplinary task force to respond to all of them, be they general or specific in nature. The task force includes experts in: employment, commercial contracts, corporate, international arbitration & litigation, tax and transportation.
The task force has already analysed the most commonly faced issues and has prepared an overview of the key aspects to consider and some practical suggestions. It’s available here.
We are only too aware of the multiple factors at play here and of their varying nature from company to company. And more uncertainty could well arise in the coming hours depending on how the situation develops. With that in mind, we have also set up an e-mail hotline to the task force for all your related queries: Covid19-Ethiopia@belex.com.
This is obviously a tough time for all us – companies, their international contacts and the entire Ethiopian economy is being put to the test. This is our contribution.