Some manufacturing companies, who were found to have transferred tax stamps to their distributors and retailers will soon be made accountable for their actions, since it is against the excise duty stamp laws.
An enforcement exercise by the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) to ensure that excise duty stamps were affixed on all affected products, revealed that some companies like Accra Brewery Limited (ABL) and Kasapreko Company Limited had given these tax stamps to distributors and retailers to be affixed.
Mr Kwabena Anto Apau, the Chief Revenue Officer at GRA and the Head of Excise Unit said it was illegal for any company to transfer tax stamps originally acquired to be affixed at the manufacturing point to distributors, wholesalers and retail outlets.
Mr Anto Apau said, distributors and retailers with old stamps prior to the introduction of the excise stamps were advised to apply for new stamps since March this year, and many companies, importers, manufacturers, wholesalers that applied, were given.
At Gbawe, the GRA officers retrieved excise stamps of various sizes (30,000 coil size, 10,000 coil size and 15,000 coil size) from a key distributor of ABL’s products and seized the products, which were from ABL and Voltic Company Limited.
Mr Anto Apau said: “The products we saw were not stamped and we were told that they have stamps themselves even though from our records, we have not supplied this company with any stamp.
"GRA is the only authority and state institutions mandated to supply the stamps to any entity, Accra Brewery Limited has no authority to supply stamps to anybody and that is why we have seized the stamps…
“It is a serious offence and we have seized the products as well,” he added.
The exercise, according to him, was simultaneously carried out in all the ten regions, stating that, the Authority was keen at ensuring that affected products were appropriately affixed with the stamps.
He urged the distributors, wholesalers and retailers to desist from accepting and selling to the public, unstamped products from manufacturers and importers because doing that would be at their own peril.
Mr Ansah Boadi, Manager at the ABL Key Distributor Shop at Gbawe said, he had an old stock and upon the introduction of the tax stamps, ABL supplied his company with stamps to be affixed on the products.
He said, he therefore ensures that before any products left the distribution point, the stamps supplied by ABL were affixed on them.
At ‘Mallam Abase’ the GRA Team retrieved some stamps from a Kasapreko retailing shop, where the Manager pointed that the Company had given him the stamps to be affixed on the alcoholic beverages they had in stock.
The exercise, which started from Osu, continued to Achimota through to Mile 7, to Gbawe and ended up at Mallam with a number of alcoholic and non-alcoholics products without tax stamps seized.
Products were seized from De-latoya Enterprise at Osu, Voltic Retail Centre at Achimota, N.J. Ventures and Joe’s Enterprise at Mile 7 among others.
It will be recalled that on October 2, the GRA went out to factories to ensure that the supply of unstamped products were minimised in the market.
During that exercise some companies were prevented from supplying their products to the distributors, wholesalers, and retail outlets.
The GRA Team through the exercise, prevented products of BSC Beverages Ghana Limited, the producers and distributors of Pepsi and its associated carbonated drinks from been sent to the market until they were duly stamped.
The Team also prevented products of ABL, from going out of the production centre because they were without the excise tax stamp.