Finance Minister Seth Terkper has revealed that government will lose about GHS1billion if some new taxes introduced are scrapped.
The minister who dispelled accusations that he tax-happy indicated that the taxes imposed by government were necessary to streamline the tax base to correspond with global business changes.
He explained that government will remove some of the taxes gradually from 2017 but was quick to add that “GHS1 billion will be lost if we remove the new taxes. Currently the largest exemption we have is on imports”.
He explained on Monday, October 31 that: “Ghana has one of the most liberal tax laws. We have never taxed the Stock Exchange. We have one of the most liberal incentive regimes. We had to review the tax regime to respond to current trends. We just do not love taxing”.
He, however, cautioned that too many tax exemptions will not inure to the benefit of the country.
For him, the fact that some African countries are giving tax exemption does not mean Ghana must do same as different dynamics govern different economies. “We should be careful in exempting too many taxes when it doesn't benefit the nation. Nigeria, for instance, exports over two million barrels of oil daily and so the dynamics are different from country to country,” he said in an interview on Starr FM.
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