By Benjamin Mensah, GNA
Accra, Nov. 18, GNA – Deputy Finance and
Economic Planning Minister, Kwaku Kwarteng, on Monday, underlined the
Government’s determination to tighten tax compliance to generate more revenue
to finance development activities.
It was also going to use financial
instruments with lower interest rates to retire expensive debts, while closely
scrutinizing all contracts before signing them.
Mr. Kwarteng, who is also the Member of
Parliament (MP) for Obuasi West, was contributing to the debate to approve the
2020 Budget Statement and Financial Policy on the floor of House.
“We will improve the fundamentals to incur
debts at lower interest rates as a way of retiring the debts we met in the
He added that to generate more revenue, they
would reform the revenue mobilisation institutions, including the Ghana Revenue
Authority and non-tax revenue.
The revenue mobilisation bodies would be
automated and there would be the tightening of compliance so that every revenue
earner would pay the rightful taxes
The Deputy Minister said it was important to
ensure that the take or pay contracts were stopped.
He suggested a relook at some of the take or
pay contracts to see if they had not caused financial loss to the state.
Mr. Kwarteng announced that the government
had put aside some money to procure fuel to power the nation’s power generation
plants and that had in a way solved the nation’s power crisis.
He said he was amazed by the opposition
National Democratic Congress (NDC) assertion that it did a better job with the
economy when the growth of 14 per cent it inherited, even with oil, had
declined to 3.4 per cent by 2016.
The Deputy Finance Minister said by 2018,
the economy was growing at 6.3 per cent and asked why the NDC should doubt the
performance of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP).
He said the Akufo-Addo Administration would
be remembered for taking the country out of the International Monetary Fund
(IMF) support, restoring the Nursing and Teacher Trainees Allowances and for
stopping dubious take or pay contracts signed under the previous
Mr. Kwarteng said the improved fundamentals
were signal for investors to decide in investing in Ghana.
Mr. Isaac Adongo, MP for Bolgatanga Central
and Member of the Finance Committee of Parliament, accused the government of
collapsing a total 437 financial institutions, saying the banking sector had
been challenged with liquidity.
“Is it not surprising that the banks are
illiquid, yet we are saying we are putting money in people’s pockets?
“Government ought to do something about the
banking crisis,” Mr Adongo said.