GRA hit below revenue target by GH¢1.8billion

By Isaac
Arkoh, GNA

Cape Coast, Sept. 20, GNA – The Ghana Revenue
Authority (GRA) failed to meet its target of raising GH¢24. 5 billion at the
end of August 2018.

Instead, it managed to mobilise a total of
GH¢22.7 billion representing a revenue shortfall of about GH¢1.8 billion.

Mr Eugene Asante Ofosuhene, the Controller and
Accountant General, said this at a sensitisation programme on the GRA’s
“withholding VAT” for the staff of his outfit in the Central and Western
regions in Cape Coast.

Withholding VAT (WVAT) is a mechanism to
account for and pay VAT on supply of goods and services by the person making
the payment.

The engagement was a collaborative exercise
under the auspices of the Ministry of Finance, GRA and the Controller and
Accountant General’s Department (CAGD).

The initiative was geared towards empowering
the participants to enable them fulfil their meaningful roles in revenue
generation and mobilisation to spearhead national development.

Mr Ofosuhene said evading tax was socially
unacceptable and “honouring tax obligations would help to mobilize
sufficient revenue for the national kitty to accelerate development.”

He said: “It is disheartening to note
that efforts being made by government to raise revenue for infrastructural
development and all round transformation aimed at lifting the vast majority of
our people out of abject poverty are thwarted by a shortfall in revenue
generation”.

“Our nation today is at the crossroads
for the attainment of unprecedented growth and development”.

“With policies like free SHS and the ‘One
District One Factory’, the onus is on us as treasury officers to assist in all
spheres of our duties to protect the public as well as improve and enhance
revenue generation”.

He said no nation can develop without an
effective mobilisation of taxes and observed that people by nature would resist
the payment of taxes.

Therefore, the GRA and partners has scaled up
public education and designed strategies for tax collection including the Value
Added Tax (VAT) and the Withholding VAT.

Explaining the WVAT processes, he said it was
the responsibility of the GRA through the Commissioner General to appoint WVAT
Agents to withhold a portion of VAT on payments made to a VAT registered
supplier who is a standard Rate Operator for the Agent to remit to the GRA.

Mr Ofosuhene said WVAT was not a new VAT or
tax regime but had been in existence under the Value Added Tax Withholding
Amendment Act, (Act 954), 2017.

He said WVAT placed a high advantage on
increasing voluntary registration, enhancing compliance of tax law and
generally improve revenue inflows into government treasury.

Mr Victor Donkor, Central Regional Director of
the Controller and Accountant General’s Department, urged revenue officers to
do more to achieve its target for the year.

The Regional Director said government has a
mission of carrying out numerous projects and initiatives; however, these could
not be achieved if officers mandated to mobilize domestic tax revenue were not
equal to the task.

GNA

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