The Kenya Revenue Authority (KRA) is seeking data on tax compliance from Airbnb owners from 2021 to 2022 period.
KRA has issued an exchange of information request to the Irish Tax Authority (Irish Revenue) seeking certain information on Kenya hosts who run tens of thousands of listings. Irish Revenue has formally requested Airbnb to share this information.
- Airbnb Ireland UC (Airbnb), an Irish registered company, is the data controller of the personal data of all users of Airbnb in Kenya.
- Irish Revenue will now be communicating to each Kenyan Airbnb host that their data is being sent to the KRA.
Why it matters
Since the rental company’s entry into the Kenyan market, thousands of apartments, homes, treehouses, and camping sites have gone live on Airbnb. A quick search for Airbnb’s in Kenya gives you options from as low as a few dollars each night for a room near Nairobi’s CBD to over $1,000 per night for a private villa on the coast.
- This is the latest tax compliance measure on Airbnb hosts in Kenya. For months, the Tourism Fund has been asking hosts to register with the fund and pay the 2% Tourism Levy.
- Airbnb is also subject to the digital services tax.
KRA will likely use the information for tax compliance assessment not just of individual hosts but of the larger rental market, as it enhances efforts to meet its ambitious revenue collection targets.
Airbnb was founded amidst the 2008 US housing crisis after the company’s founders struggled to find a solution to find adequate roommates and homestays in the San Francisco Bay Area. Today, Airbnb has become the go-to platform for short-term rentals globally, generating $8.4B USD in revenue in 2022.
- Recently, Airbnb renewed its commitment to Africa’s tourism industry with USD $500,000 fund targeting non-profit organisations supporting economic empowerment, digital access and sustainability.
“Africa boasts some of the world’s unique, culturally-rich, and experientially diverse destinations and homes in the world. We want to be part of solutions that will help more African families and communities to attract guests from around the world and to share more of what Africa has to offer,” said Velma Corcoran, Regional Lead Middle East, Africa at Airbnb.