Namibia will soon phase out the Export Processing Zone (EPZ) and replace it with the Special Economic Zone (SEZ), Finance Minister Calle Schlettwein said on Wednesday.

Schlettwein made the remarks as he submitted to the National Assembly an income tax amendment bill seeking to abolish EPZ tax incentives.

“The move comes against the backdrop of Namibia once classified by the European Union (EU) as a tax haven due to tax evasion loopholes created by the EPZ. The EPZ was tailored to attracting foreign investment, among others. To encourage foreign investment, a complete tax relief was given as a reward under the EPZ,” the minister said.

He said the EU’s criticism about Namibia’s EPZ regime was a factor in prompting the country to become a member of the Global Forum on Transparency and Exchange of Information for Tax Purposes. Enditem

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