The Ugandan government says it has raised UGX7 billion (USD1.9 million) since 1 July from its controversial new taxes on mobile money transactions and social media usage. According to a report from Agence Ecofin, which cites Finance Minister David Bahati, the authorities raked in UGX5 billion from mobile money services alone. Public protests against the levies have led the government to reduce the mobile money tax from 1% to 0.5% and to make it applicable only to withdrawals rather than both withdrawals and deposits. The tax is expected to bring in UGX115 billion annually for the state after the changes. The government has refused to back down with regard to its social media tax, which charges users of services such as Facebook and WhatsApp a fee of UGX200 per day.
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