The Finance Act 2017 has mandated the Tanzania Revenue Authority (the “TRA”) with the obligation to evaluate, assess, collect and account for fees for all advertisements. Such obligation previously was the purview of the City Council, Municipal Council and/or District Council (together the “Local Government Authorities”) as applicable within the Local Government Authorities relevant jurisdiction.

The TRA issued a notice in February 2019 (the “Notice”) stating that the fees payable for commercial advertisements on boards, billboards, posters, hoardings and vehicles (together the “Advertisements”) was being enforced and has been effective since July 2017. The Notice stipulated that the Advertisements are classified into three (3) categories, namely:

  • Illuminated Advertisements;
  • Non-illuminated Advertisements; and
  • Advertisements on motor vehicles.

The Notice further stipulates that the person responsible of; or the owner of any of the above mentioned Advertisements must pay the TRA such fees instead of paying the Local Government Authorities. It also provides that assessments for the payment of the said fees will be issued directly to the person responsible for; or the owners of the Advertisements and not any third party such as owners of motor vehicles or buildings on which the advertisements are affixed, unless the owners of the motor vehicles or buildings are also the owners of the advertisements affixed on the vehicles or buildings.

We inquired with the TRA in order to ascertain the fees for the Advertisements and they informed us that the fee is Tanzania Shillings ten thousand (TZS 10,000/=) per square metre for all types of Advertisements. Furthermore, it is no clear how these fees that are to be collected by the TRA work in conjunction with the Urban Planning (Control of Advertisements) Regulations 2018 (which come into force on 9 March 2018) requirements to pay and obtain a permit to advertise from the relevant Planning Authority, and whether they are separate and distinct or multiple layers of fees for advertising. We are requesting clarification on this and will provide an update in due course.

If you have any questions regarding this legal update, please contact Amish Shah by email on