Namibian finance minister cuts income tax

Namibia’s finance minister Tuesday gave corporate and individual taxpayers some relief by lowering taxes while announcing government expenditure increases of nearly 20 percent.

"The non-mining company tax will be reduced by one percent from 34 to 33 percent this April and another one percent in 2014 to 32 percent," finance minister Saara Kuugongelwa-Amadhila said while tabling the budget in parliament.

Income tax for (non-diamond) mining companies remains 37 percent and for diamond mining companies 55 percent.

Personal income tax will drop considerably from 35 percent to 25 percent for individuals earning up to 300,000 Namibia dollars ($34,000) annually.

The finance minister increased the taxable income threshold and reduced the rate in all brackets.

"To relieve the general tax burden on individuals and to assist our citizens in affording the basic amenities of life, income tax brackets are changed," the minister told parliament.

The southern African country's 140,000 pensioners will see their stipend rise from 500 to 600 Namibia dollars.

Total government spending for the 2013-14 financial year as from April increases 19 percent to around $5.4 billion.

"Government intends to finance the deficit through a combination of drawdown on accumulated cash reserves and borrowing mainly from domestic markets," the minister announced.

"Namibia’s economic growth is projected at 4,3 percent in 2013," minister Kuugongelwa-Amadhila said.