General News of Friday, 3 March 2017
Thursday March 2 is a day many in Ghana will remember for a long time to come. It was the day the country’s Finance Minister, Kenneth Ofori-Atta, presented the Akufo-Addo-led administration’s first budget statement.
It was a statement that touched the chords and nerves of many who had eagerly anticipated its reading.
The finance minister among others announced government’s decision to abolish some 15 taxes – a decision that appears to have won the hearts and souls of several business owners in the country.
According to the minister, the ‘nuisance taxes’, as he chose to call them, were doing more harm than good to the country’s revenue hence the need to abolish them and in their stead have a broadened tax base.
The abolished taxes announced on Thursday by the Finance Minister include;
• The 1 % Special Import Levy
• Kayayei Market Tolls
• 17.5 % VAT/NHIL on financial services
• 17.5 % VAT/NHIL on selected imported medicines, that are not produced locally
• 17.5 % VAT/NHIL on domestic airline tickets
• 5 % VAT/NHIL on Real Estate sales
• Replaced 17.5% VAT/NHIL with 3 % flat rate for traders
• Tax credits and other incentives for businesses that hire young graduates from tertiary institutions
• Tax Incentives for Young Entrepreneurs
• Duty on imported Spare parts
• Corporate Income Tax to be progressively reduced from 25% to 20% in 2018
* Excise duty on petroleum
* Reduction in special Petroleum Tax Rates from 17.5% to 15%
* National Electrification Levy reduced from 5% to 3%
* Public Lighting Levy reduced from 5% to 2%
The announcement of abolishing some taxes by the Akufo-Addo led government was greeted well by Ghanaians as this brought excitement to many especially the ‘kayayeis’ and spare parts dealers in the country.
Below is how some Ghanains reacted to the tax cuts.