SDL: stands for Skills Development Levy, is a levy collected by TRA under the Vocational Education Training Act and Income Tax Act.

Chargeability: SDL is charged based on the gross pay of all payments made by the employer to the employees employed by such employer in the particular time. Unlike PAYE the SDL is due and payable by an employer.

The gross emoluments is a sum of amount from salaries, wages, payments in lieu of leave, fees, commissions, bonuses, gratuity, any subsistence travelling , entertainment or other allowance received by employee in respect of employment or service rendered.

In general everything chargeable under PAYE is also taken into account when calculating SDL.

Who is liable for SDL?

Any person who employs four or more employees shall pay SDL from gross emoluments.

Applicable rates:

The rate applicable for SDL is 5% of the total emoluments paid to all employees during the month.

The employee includes permanent employees, part time employees, secondary employees, casual laborers etc.

 Employer’s obligation:

  • To calculate the actual amount and pay the amount to Commissioners account to the respective Tax Region in which such employer is registered.

 The SDL payments shall be made in line with PAYE using the same bank-pay-slip.

  • To prepare a monthly return and submit to the TRA office on or before the 7th day of the month following the month of payroll.

To prepare and remit half year certificate which tally with the monthly returns submitted during the period.

Specified employers exempted from SDL

a)    A government department or a public institution which is wholly financed by the Government

b)    Diplomatic Missions

c)    The United Nations and its organization

d)    International and other foreign institutions dealing with aid or technical assistance

e)    Religious institutions whose Employees are solely employed to administer places of worship, to give religious instructions or generally to minister religion

f)    Charitable organizations

g)    Local Government Authority 


Note: Charitable organization means resident entity of a public character registered as such and performs its functions solely for

                      I.        The relief of poverty or distress of public

                    II.        Provision of education of public health and ;

The Commissioner General is ,upon due diligence making ,satisfied that the business conducted by such entity is for public good.