Finance Minister, Mr. Seth Tekper has stated that Ghana must improve its tax mobilization structure to meet the country’s middle income status for fiscal consolidation.
Currently, Ghana’s tax performance on the African continent is around 17 to 18 percent, while the percentage of tax to GDP is below 35 percent.
Speaking at the sidelines of a seminar organized by the Fiscal Affairs Department of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) in Accra, Mr. Seth Tekper explained that even though Ghana’s tax performance is improving relative to countries on the continent, there is still more to be done to achieve middle income tax goals.
“We need to set our goal to achieve middle income tax effort. If you look at it in terms of developing countries, in terms of Sub-Saharan African average, our tax performance is currently around 17, 18 percent and is not bad. But obviously as we become a middle income country and as more demands come, we need to intensify our tax effort,” he stressed.
The seminar which was held in collaboration with the Ministry of Finance and the Ghana Revenue Authority(GRA) was targeted at discussing the Tax Policy and Administration Topical Trust Fund.
Mr. Tekper predicted that with an improvement in power supply, and recovery of commodity prices, the development could reflect in improved tax revenue in the short to medium term.
“Right now we are seeing a recovery of commodity prices and the dumsor has also come down. It obviously means that activities may pick up very soon and we expect an improvement in the tax revenue generation pattern,” he assured.
Stating some moves that have been taken to improve the revenue mobilization, Mr. Tekper cited the single window programme which is currently in its second phase aimed at consolidating tax regime at the ports of the country.
“These initiatives and several other measures ongoing are all aimed at improving revenue through tax. Tax obligation is a duty and we must all help government to achieve the target,” he said.
He was of the view that, with the implementation of the new tax reforms, government expects to improve the tax regime substantially by 2017.
By: Lawrence Segbefia/citibusinessnews.com/Ghana