The National Revenue Authority (NRA) in a press release dated 22nd January 2024, has informed the Public, especially Manufacturers, Importers, Distributors, and Retailers of excisable goods such as tobacco, wine, spiritous beverages, and beer products that following the introduction of the mandatory Digital Excise Tax Stamps in October 2023, its system will now go live on 1″ February 2024.

The Introduction of the Excise Tax Stamp Program according to the press release is a Policy by the government geared towards the efficient collection of government revenues to support national development programs, protect the citizens from harmful and counterfeit goods, prevent smuggling, and create an equal grounds for compliant importers and manufacturers of excisable products.

It was disclosed that as a way of aiding registration and compliance in the use of excise stamps as well as ensuring business stability, the Government will fund the procurement of the excise stamps and make them available at no cost to all importers and manufacturers of excisable products for the first three months (90 days) after the go-live of the system. After this period, the excise stamp would be paid for at the published fees before the stamps are issued to a manufacturer or importer of an excisable product.

“For importers of excisable products, affixing of stamps is part of the customs process. They shall either affix the stamps on imported excisable products during production at the foreign manufacturer’s facility or before the goods are released by customs or offered for sale to the public. For warehousing purposes, importers shall go through the normal customs clearance process and be allowed to take their goods to respective warehouses, which must be inspected and confirmed carrying suitable facilities for affixing the stamps”.

Taxpayers of the system are eligible for training and other forms of technical support. All importers and manufacturers of excisable products are
therefore urged to register for the system and apply for the stamps through the product tracing systems (PTS).