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Business News Sun, 12 May 2019

Some tax exemptions are not relevant – Ken Ofori-Atta

Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta has disclosed that cabinet is working on reviewing the tax exemption country’s policy for parliament’s consideration.

According to the Minister, the government is challenged with revenue mobilization and there's the need to take a look at the tax collection process.

The Finance Minister was speaking at an Economic Forum organized by the Danquah Institute in Accra.

"It's really a matter of worry but I must say we're assessing it and there is a cabinet document that is supposed to be in parliament so that we recalibrate the exemptions.

The government is trying to woo foreign direct investments and the exemptions have been very phenomenal in this short period" he noted.

The government in the 2018 budget granted tax exemptions to some manufacturers as well as removing some nuisance taxes on some imported items including spare parts.

According to Mr Ofori-Atta, Cabinet has identified that some of the tax exemptions have not been useful hence the need for a review.

He has also downplayed the assertions that the reduction in benchmark value implemented at the port is having a negative impact on revenue.

The Minister, however, commended the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) for improving domestic revenue collection despite the challenging times for the economy.

Meanwhile, Commissioner-General of the Ghana Revenue Authority, Emmanuel Kofi Nti has issued a strict notice to its heads of taxpayer offices to ensure that collection from the informal sector especially the self-employed, records positive growth.

According to him, the non-performance of tax revenue from that sector is a source of worry for the commission and all necessary measures are being put in place to address the situation.

Informal tax collection has been a challenge for the Ghana Revenue Authority due to the no availability of credible data for the sector.

Mr Kofi Nti has hinted that Informal tax mobilisation has been key on his agenda to increase revenue.

He disclosed that a strict notice has been issued to all officials at the various revenue offices to ensure positive growth in Informal collection.

On his part, Commissioner of Customs, Isaac Crentsil hinted that the country recorded negative growth in the collection at all the ports as a result of non-compliance.

“The collection has been slow because some of the importers try to cut corners to evade tax and swerve the system but we're working to seal all loopholes. All the ports in 2018 recorded a negative growth though it's higher than the result for 2017," he noted.

Source: Myjoyonline.com
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