News FlashesJanuary 22, 2024

CRS News Flash 19 January 2024 – AFRICAN COUNTRIES – Recent legislative changes for 2024

JANUARY 2024 – AFRICAN COUNTRIES

RECENT LEGISLATIVE CHANGES FOR 2024
It is important that employers note the following:

BOTSWANA
Adjustment of minimum wages for 2024

The Ministry of Labour and Home Affairs has issued a press release to inform the public that the Government of Botswana has approved an increase of 23.5% for the minimum wage rates for 2024.

Effective 1 February, the adjusted minimum wage rates are as follows:

To view a copy of the press release, follow the link

EGYPT
Minimum wage increase and annual bonus increase

The Ministry of Planning and Economic Development issued Decree No. 90 of 2023 on 11 December 2023, which introduces an increase in the minimum salary of private sector employees.

As of 1 January 2024, the minimum salary for private sector employees shall be EGP3,500 instead of EGP3,000.

The National Wages Council has also approved an increase in the annual periodic bonus for workers in the private sector of no less than 3% of the insurance subscription wage, with a minimum of EGP200.

To view the press release, follow the link.

Social insurance increase

Effective 1 January 2020, the Social Insurance and Pension Law no. 148 of 2019 mandates a 15% increase on the minimum and maximum salary limits on which the social insurance contributions are calculated. The increase will be effective annually until the 2027 tax year. Accordingly, the below monthly social insurance contribution floor and ceiling amounts apply to all salaries paid after 1 January of the respective tax year.

For the tax year commencing 1 January 2024, the minimum social insurance contribution base will increase from EGP700 to EGP2,000 per month and the maximum contribution base will increase from EGP10,900 to EGP12,600 per month.

Please note the minimum and maximum limits are being approximated to the nearest hundred pounds.

To view Law 148 of 2019 (only available in Arabic), follow the link. To view the translated version, click here.

ESWATINI
National Provident Fund (ENPF) contributions 2024

Effective 1 January 2024, the ENPF board has increased the ceiling amount of wages for the purposes of the calculation of statutory contributions from E3,500 to E3,700 per month, bringing the maximum contribution per employee and employer to the following:

It is illegal for the employer to recover contribution arrears from current wages. A supplementary contribution may be deducted from an employee’s wages in whole or in part, depending on the agreement reached between the employer and the employee.

As the Eswatini Revenue Authority tax year runs from July to June and the ENPF limits are applied from January to December, with an annual increase in January every tax year, the tax constant should be changed twice a year, i.e. in January and again in July.

The Minister for Labour and Social Security approved the increase as contained in Legal Notice No. 140 of 2020. The notice states the statutory contributions from 2020 to 2024.

To view a copy of the notice, follow the link.

GHANA
National daily minimum wage

In line with Section 113 (1) (a) of the Labour Act, 2003 (Act 651), the National Tripartite Committee (NTC) has concluded negotiations on the determination of the 2024 National Daily Minimum Wage (NDMW) at its meeting held on Monday, 13 November 2023.

The NDMW has been increased to GHs18.15 a day, effective January 2024. This translates to a monthly wage of GHs490.05 (assuming 27 working days in a month).

To view the official announcement by the NTC, follow the link

Tax changes

On 15 November 2023 the 2024 Budget Statement was delivered by Ghana’s Minister for Finance and Economic Planning. The government has made various proposals on taxation in the 2024 budget.

After the passage of the tax bills by Parliament, the President assented to the bills on 29 December 2023, and they were duly gazetted on the same date for entry into force. The Income Tax (Amendment) (No 2) Act 2023, (Act 1111) came into force on 30 December 2023.

The tax-free band of the resident individual income tax schedule has been amended to correspond to the new NDMW.

With effect from 1 January 2024, the rates of income tax for individuals will be as illustrated below. The implementation date has also been confirmed by the Ghana Revenue Authority as 1 January 2024.

It should be noted that band 6 should sum to GHs 600,000, beyond which the final tax rate of 35% would apply in band 7, but an error was made in Act 1111 where the sum of band 1 to 6 is in excess by GHs5,000. This means that the effective amount to be taxed at the rate of 35% will be an amount more than Ghs605,000 and not Ghs600,000 as envisaged in the Act.

Should this error be corrected by another amendment of the Act, an update will be released.

To view Act 1111, follow the link.

Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) contributions increase

Statutory contributions towards retirement are categorised under a three-tiered scheme as follows:

·        First tier – a mandatory basic social security scheme;

·        Second tier – a mandatory fully funded and privately managed occupational scheme; and

·        Third tier – a voluntary fully funded and privately managed provident fund and personal pension scheme.

SSNIT and the National Pension Authority (NPA) have issued a public notice to inform employers that the monthly salary cap for Tier 1 has been increased from GHs42,000.00 to GHs52,000.00, effective 1 January 2024.

From 1 January 2024 the maximum and minimum contributions payable to SSNIT will be GHs7,020 and GHs66.16 respectively.

To view the SSNIT public notice, follow the link.

ZAMBIA
National Pension Scheme Authority (NAPSA) contributions 2024

The National Pension Scheme Authority is mandated to review the contribution ceiling and pension payments annually and adjust them in line with the change in the national average earnings (NAE). This is in accordance with Section 35 of the National Pension Scheme Act No 40 of 1996.

The NAE are determined annually by the Zambia Statistics Agency.

The NAE figure for 2024 increased from ZK6,710 to ZK7,454.

Accordingly, the contribution ceiling has been revised to ZK29,816 in 2024.

Effective 1 January 2024, the maximum monthly deductible employee’s contribution amount for the year 2024 has been revised to ZK1,490.80 and correspondingly, the total maximum employee and employer monthly statutory contribution is ZK2,981.60, which is 10% of the contribution ceiling, constituting 5% employee share and 5% employer share.

The contribution rate remains unchanged at 10% of the employee’s monthly gross earnings, subject to the statutory contribution ceiling above. Earnings therefore include basic salary, bonuses, commission, severance pay, overtime allowance, leave allowance, acting allowance, commuted leave days, etc.

The view the NAPSA public notice, follow the link.

ZIMBABWE
Tax changes effective 1 January 2024

Following the 2024 Budget Speech delivered on 30 November 2023, the Finance Act, 2023 was gazetted on 29 December 2023. This Act implemented the tax adjustments mentioned in the budget speech.

With effect from 1 January 2024, the monthly PAYE tax free threshold for employees has increased to ZWL$ 750,000.

The bonus tax-free threshold has been revised from ZWL$ 500,000 to ZWL$ 7,500,000, effective 1 November 2023.

No changes to the foreign currency tables were announced.

To view the 2024 budget speech, follow the link. To view the Finance Act, 2023, click here.

Pension and Other Benefits Scheme (POBS) contributions

The National Social Security Authority (NSSA) has published the maximum amount for the POBS monthly contributions insurable earnings ceiling applicable for January, February and March 2024.

The ceiling limit remains unchanged at ZWL$ 2,414,896.00.

For both employer and employee, the maximum deduction remains ZWL$ 108,670.32 (4.5% X 2,414,896).

To view the schedule of insurable earnings on the NSSA website, follow the link.

 

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