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Come Clear On Tax Cuts – Minority Tells Gov’t   
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Minority in Parliament has dared the Nana Addo led- government to state clearly how its tax cuts announced during the 2017 budget statement would benefit Ghanaians.

According to the Deputy Minority leader, Hon James Klutse Avedzi, “government has to state clearly mechanisms it is putting in place to ensure that importers do not increase prices of their products despite abolishment of certain duties”.

Speaking on the floor of Parliament yesterday during the final laps of the debate on the 2017 budget, he explained the tax cuts would endanger the country’s economy if it is not handled properly.

It would be recalled that the Finance Minister, Mr Ken Ofori-Atta announced the abolishment of duty on importation of spare parts and seven others when he delivered the 2017 budget.

They include;

(a) Abolish one percent special import levy,

(b) Abolish 17.5 VAT on financial services

(c) Abolish 17.5% VAT on selected imported medicines

(d) Initiate steps to remove import duties on raw materials and machinery

(e) Abolish 17.5 VAT on domestic airline tickets

(f) Abolish 5% VAT on real estates

(g) Abolish excise duty on petroleum

(h) Reduce special petroleum tax rate from 17.5% to 15%

(i) Abolish duties on importation of spare parts.

(j) Abolish levies imposed on Kayayei’s by local authorities

(k) Replace the 17.5 VAT on Ghana Stock Exchange (GSE) traders to a flat rate of 3.5 percent

(l) Reduce National Electrification levy

However, the Minority registered its displeasure with the decision when it was announced on the floor, citing the difficulties it might pose for revenue generation.

Hon Avedzi opined that the former National Democratic Congress (NDC) government was “gradually turning” the country from import dependency to an export-led economy, adding the tax cuts would unroll those achievements.

“The government in 2016 was able to make a balance of payment surplus of $247 million…as a result of a reduction in import duty by 7.2 percent and an increase in export duty by 5.3 percent,” he noted.

“All these measures will not yield any good result for the economy if things are not done right,” the Deputy Minority leader lamented.

Source: Today

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