‘Give Tax Holiday to Rural Health Firms’

GOVERNMENT should consider awarding a tax holiday to institutions that are setting up health facilities in the rural areas, a Kasama entrepreneur has said.

Corporate Private Medical Clinic and Laboratory proprietor Comas Chilongo said it was important for the Government in the 2015 Budget to consider giving tax incentives to entrepreneurs putting up health facilities in rural areas.

Mr Chilongo said a provision should be included in the next year’s Budget on tax holidays for local entrepreneurs providing health care.

He said setting up a health facility in the rural area was very costly, hence the need for the Government to waive tax on medical equipment.

“Establishing a hosipital is a long term project and the Government should waive tax and give incentives to the health sector, we really need it,” Mr Chilongo said.

On the financial sector, Mr Chilongo said it was important for the commercial banks to develop products that would accommodate the Small and?Media Entrepreneurs (SMEs), especially for businesses in rural areas.

“Commercial banks should be flexible when giving out credit to the small bussinesses. It is difficult to access loans from the banks despite having all the collateral. I have other businesses, I run the guest?house and shop which I built with the loan I got from Natsave,” he said.

Mr Chilongo appealed to the Bank of Zambia (BoZ) to look at the issues of interest rates because they are still very high.

“It is imperative that the lending rates come down to even five per cent if possible because we need to borrow the money for investment and not consumption,” he said.

Source : The Times of Zambia

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