Business News of Thursday, 5 January 2017
The Ashanti Regional sector of the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority has made significant gains, recording excess revenue of GHC329.032 million in 2016.
The sector was given an initial target of GHC285.640 million but managed to exceed that by June 30, 206 by generating GHC297.195 million. Government consequently gave the sector an extra target of GHC149.5190 million, thus bringing its overall target for the year to GHC435.15 million.
But at the end of the year 2016, the sector had mobilised a total of GHC614.672 million. The figure represents 115 per cent increment in its initial target of GHC285.640 million.
Sector commander, Kwasi Ahiakpor in an interview with TV3 attributed the success in the revenue mobilization to pragmatic operational measures, increased voluntary tax compliance, strong government support and exemplary performance of officers.
Kumasi is touted as the trading hub and commercial capital of the country, and CEPS officials have described the city as the second largest collection point in Ghana after Tema.
Most imports into the country end up in Kumasi hence has become a crucial in revenue mobilization. Though smuggling has been on the ascendency in the region, import and other levies were lagging behind at about 11.29 per cent, with import VAT in adverse of 6.77 per cent.
Officials say revenue collection over the years has been difficult because of high default rate by warehousing and manufacturing companies.
The Regional Commander said they were looking at improving the areas where they did not perform well. He was excited by the progress made so far predicted what he described as rollicking times ahead.
Mr Ahiakpor observed the sector is confronted with a lot of challenges and mentioned lack of space, accommodation for staff, logistics among others as some of the challenges he wants authorities to help address.
“Our major problem now is congestion at the offices and vehicles to take officers round,” he said.