Ghanaian News

Economist: NPP is credited with rushing to scrap taxes

An economist, Daniel Amateye Anim has said the Akufo-Addo-led administration rushed in abolishing “nuisance taxes when they took the reins of government.

Speaking on Asaase Radio’s Saturday news analysis programme, The Forum, Amarteye Anim indicated that the government could have still benefited from “nuisance” taxes while gradually facing them out instead of scrapping them.

“The NPP is credited with rushing to scrap taxes. I cautioned when they came into power and they wanted to scrap the so-called “nuisance taxes. My advice was that look, you (government) didn’t introduce these taxes and you’re new to government, relax and enjoy these taxes and be able to mobilise some revenue and gradually roll it out if you want to.

“But of course, because they wanted to move the economy from taxation to production and also to appease the public that yes, we have what it takes to do it, they rushed in scrapping the so-called nuisance taxes and what do we see today, we are introducing it in another form gradually,” he said.

Abolishing nuisance taxes

The government in its first Budget Statement and Economic Policy in March 2017 abolished about 11 “nuisance” taxes and reviewed four other taxes which were negatively affecting businesses in the country.

Presenting the budget to parliament on (2 March 2017), Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta stated that “a number of tax measures have been introduced in recent years in an attempt to deal with revenue shortfalls but some have proven to be nuisance taxes and have no revenue yielding potential and at the same time impose a significant burden on the private sector and the average Ghanaian citizen,” he stated.

According to him, revenue administration remains a challenge and suggested that to boost revenue streams, the government will strengthen tax administration, reduce tax exemptions, plug revenue loopholes and leakages and combat tax evasion.

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