Tax increments show the inability of government to find other streams of tax revenue.

tax increment

“In the last couple of years the revenue envelope has failed to respond to various tax measures that has been implemented.”

Prof. Godfred Bokpin, head of the University of Ghana’s Business School, said in an interview on Joy News’ PM Express show.

He was speaking about the tax increases in the 2019 mid-year budget review by the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta in parliament on Monday, 29 July.

The Minister proposed an increment in the Energy Sector levies (EXLA) and Communication Services Tax (CST).

These taxes were approved on Friday, 2nd August by Parliament.
The EXLA has increased prices of petrol and diesel have been increased by 90 pesewas per gallon. Liquefied Petroleum Gas (LPG) has been upped by 8 pesewas per kilogram.

The upward review in the CST means every Ghanaian, who uses a mobile phone will now pay more, for the same time spent making calls and browsing the internet.

It will be virtually impossible for any country to develop without taxes. So, when the present government came into power, it indicated that it will improve tax collection in the country.

‘The tax base will be broadened by formalizing the economy through the national identification card system among others. We believe that these initiatives will maximize revenue collection while rationalizing expenditures.’ Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta said in 2017.

This, the government said will help increase the number of tax payers in the informal sector. The informal sector is defined by the Ghana Statistical Service as businesses which are not registered with the Registrar-General’s Department and do not keep formal accounts.

It is two and a half years in the government’s tenure and the issuance of the National Identification Card is not even half way complete.

The Tax Identification Number (TIN), which is a unique number generated by the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), for persons and companies upon application, has been relatively successful in increasing tax compliance. The TIN has been in existence for a while now but this government’s efforts has made it more successful.

But, the issue is many Ghanaians in the informal sector don’t have (TINs).

The informal sector’s contribution to the economy was GHC73 billion in 2017. That was 28.6 percent of the total value of goods and services produced in Ghana, also known as (GDP).

Available statistics from the Ghana Statistical Service indicate that close to 1.2 million Ghanaians are registered tax payers. Only 200,000 Ghanaians in the informal sector are registered tax payers.

This burdens 1.2 million Ghanaians with the duty of providing taxes to fund government’s numerous projects.

Professor Bopkin indicates that the increase in taxes were “inevitable” because as a country we have failed to look at other ways of generating tax revenue.’

According to the economist, because of this failure our leaders use the “lazy approach”, which is imposing excess taxes on the citizenry to generate revenue.

“This has been Ghana’s problem, we are more efficient when we are in opposition, when we are in government then the reality becomes hard for us to manage,” he added.

He also said, in-addition to our woes, those who willingly comply with paying their taxes are “very low”.

The ability of Ghana’s leaders to devise creative ways to find other streams of tax revenue for the country is clearly challenged.

Relentlessly, the Akufo-Addo led government has pushed the idea of moving Ghana’s economy from “taxation to production”.

However, the old ways of imposing stifling taxes on Ghanaians still persists.

This act defeats the reasons why Ghanaians voted for the present government, one of which was to be freed from  unnecessary taxes.

By: Kofi Boateng (kofiboatengj243@gmail.com)

Publish on Apt

Do you have any Social, informational, educational or entertaining stuff that should be featured on www.aptnewsghana.com?

Please submit your stories, pictures, and videos to us via WhatsApp: +233548388489 or click on the icon on your screen. Alternatively, email us: aptnewsghana@gmail.com

RSS APO Group – Africa-Newsroom: latest news releases related to Africa

  • H.E. Minister Chief Timipre Sylva Sheds Light on Market Trends in Exclusive Africa Energy Chamber (AEC) Roundtable June 24, 2022
    H.E. Chief Timipre Sylva, Minister of State for Petroleum Resources of Nigeria, provided insights into the latest across the country’s oil and gas sector during an exclusive roundtable interview organized and hosted by the African Energy Chamber (www.EnergyChamber.org) on June 24, 2022. Oil production in Nigeria has been on the decline recently. What are the main constraints […]
  • Eritrea Cycling Championship Commences June 24, 2022
    Download logoEritrea Road Cycling Championship 2022 commences today, 24 June, at the Asmara Martyrs Cemetery area with an individual time trial. In the junior men category that covered 18 km, Aklilu Arefaine, Samuel Haile, and Yoel Habteab stood first, second and third respectively. Arsema Woldemicael also won the junior females’ category that covered 9 km, […]
  • President Kenyatta Attends Commonwealth Summit Focused On Post-Covid Recovery, Sustainable Development June 24, 2022
    Download logoPresident Uhuru Kenyatta today joined other Heads of Government at the Commonwealth leaders’ summit that focused on post-Covid recovery and sustainable development. The official opening ceremony of the 2022 Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) held at the Kigali Convention Centre was presided over by His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales who represented […]
  • Congo Applies COVID-19 Genomic Sequencing Skills to Other Disease June 24, 2022
    Two years after the start of the pandemic, the Republic of Congo has begun to apply the genomic sequencing capacities developed in the fight against COVID-19 to other pathogens, including those responsible for malaria, tuberculosis or diarrhoeal diseases in young children. “Thanks to genomic sequencing, the authorities are informed almost immediately of the circulation of […]
  • Vaccinating Liberia’s Vulnerable Communities Against COVID-19 June 24, 2022
    Liberia has made headway with its COVID-19 vaccination having fully vaccinated 70% of the total eligible population since March 2021, when the vaccination programme kicked off. Robust coordination between the government and its partners, an effective COVID-19 steering committee and multiple mass vaccination campaigns have contributed to the country’s success. Now the country is ensuring […]
  • G7 Should Look to Africa for Lessons in How to Manage Multiple Crises (By Uhuru Kenyatta and Patrick Verkooijen) June 24, 2022
    Download logo By Uhuru Kenyatta, President of Kenya and Patrick Verkooijen, CEO of the Global Center on Adaptation. The G7 will convene shortly to agree on a common response to the multiple crises buffeting our world. War, food shortages, energy shocks and inflation are causing havoc in nations both rich and poor, but Africa has been […]
  • Building Resilience in Kalobeyei Integrated Settlement June 24, 2022
    In Kalobeyei Integrated Settlement camp, 20 km from Kakuma in Turkana County, Lilo* a refugee from Congo is busy sewing bags in preparation for World Refugee Day. Lilo, a mother of six, left Congo in 2017. “I used to be a community radio presenter. One day as I was looking for content, I got some sensitive […]
  • New ICUs Set to Open at Hospitals Across Lesotho June 24, 2022
    Critical care patients in Lesotho will soon be spared a trip to South Africa to receive treatment. The country is on the verge of opening its first intensive care units in public hospitals. At Mafeteng Hospital in southwestern Lesotho, an eight-bed intensive care unit will feature a ventilator with piped oxygen and can accommodate a […]
  • Delivering Progress in Africa’s COVID-19 Vaccination Drive June 24, 2022
    Africa has made progress in COVID-19 vaccination. The continent has to date received around 824 million COVID-19 vaccines. The COVAX Facility, the multilateral platform established to facilitate equity in global vaccine distribution, has delivered more than 60% of these doses, while around 33% have been procured by countries through bilateral deals and donations. The African […]
  • On a Video Conference on Cooperation in the Sphere of Food Trade June 24, 2022
    Download logoOn June 21st, 2022 a video conference on the issues of development of Belarusian-Egyptian cooperation in the sphere of food trade was held. The event was organized by the National Center for Marketing and the Association of Egyptian Businessmen with the assistance of the Embassy of the Republic of Belarus in the Arab Republic […]
About Editor 627 Articles
Joe Bright Nyarko Journalist/Communication Researcher. Environment & Sustainability Advocate. Managing Editor of aptnewsghana.com, a non-profit news portal with bias towards environment and sustainability issues, rural development policies and gender & inequality.