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Business News Thu, 20 Jan 2022

E-levy to help regulate government spending - John Kumah

E-levy will be passed, John Kumah

E-levy bill to be submitted to parliament on Jan 25

E-levy already passed by finance committee, awaiting parliament approval


Deputy Minister for Finance, John Kumah, said he is optimistic about the approval of the E-levy by parliament, a tool that will help regulate government’s expenditure.

He said the finance committee has already passed the bill, awaiting the approval of parliament, adding that concerns made by investors have been duly noted.

“We believe that we may start the year slow like we’re seeing. If eventually the E-Levy and the benchmark values come on board which they will come…that one I can assure you that eventually, it will happen; which has caused anxiety or concern among the investor community.

“They think that you have an Appropriation Bill passed but the revenue that is anchored on is in limbo…so we appreciate those concerns but we’re confident that the steps being taken will ensure that eventually we are able to pass the E-Levy and are able to do the [benchmark reversals].”

Economists and market watchers have constantly bemoaned the implications of the e-levy on the country’s digitization agenda. They want government to instead reduce its expenditure.

John Kumah was, however, positive that government will try to spend within its revenue which is expected to be generated from the levy.

“And so that is a clear indication that government is also looking at expenditure rationalisation and making sure that we don’t over-run the budget. Also, if you look at the growth of revenue for 2022, we are looking at about 40% growth… and if you are looking at expenditure, we are looking to spend an extra 25, so that tells you that we are actually slowing on expenditure to ensure fiscal consolidation.”

Kumah said passing the E-Levy is crucial to among other things reducing youth unemployment and fixing bad roads in the country.

He stated categorically that, “we believe we will pass E-Levy; we believe once E-Levy is passed we will stay within budget targets, …it is ok to have positive ratings from all the agencies, it only shows confidence”.

“But with or without confidence [from investors], we as Ghanaians and managers of this economy, we are very confident of what we are doing and we believe we will put this nation on track just as we have done all this while," he added.
Source: www.ghanaweb.com
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