Minister of Communication, Mrs Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, has disclosed that Ghana has saved US$1.1 million monthly since the introduction of the Kelni GVG Common Platform.
She explained that, over the five-year contract period, “a total savings of US$66 million” would have accrued.
Kelni GVG was a government contract worth US$89 million in 2017, to develop and supervise a Common Platform for traffic monitoring, revenue assurance and mobile money monitoring, with its implementation pursuant to the Communication Service Tax (Amendment) Act, 2013, Act 864.
The Common Platform has four main components (fraud management, traffic monitoring, revenue assurance and mobile money monitoring) with the National Communications Authority (NCA) and the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) are the implementing agencies and beneficiaries of this project.
Addressing the Parliament, in response to a question posed by the Member of Parliament for the Ningo Prampram Constituency, Mr Sam George on Friday, 7 August 2020, Mrs Owusu-Ekuful said: “The introduction of a Common Platform has resulted in savings of US$1.1 million monthly over the previous contract, resulting in a total savings of US$66 million over the five-year contract period.”
She further indicated that “an estimated amount of GH¢300 million in taxes was also saved between the first quarter of 2017 to date as a result of the announcement of the implementation of the Common Platform on March 8, 2017.”
In the telecommunications sector, she revealed that the government, since the implementation of the Common Platform has made savings of GH¢1.5 billion under-declared taxes in the in 2017.
“The introduction of the Common Platform has uncovered that, prior to the introduction of the policy, GH¢470 million in taxes was lost from potential under-declarations between 2015 to the first quarter of 2017”, she said.
Mrs Owusu-Ekuful also intimated that the Common Platform has been able to record over 150,000 international calls into the country every month and thereby detecting fraudulent SIM automatically, adding that, this has saved the country of tax fraud of an additional GH¢327.3 million from the activities of SIM Card fraud since 2017 when the Common Platform began operations.
On Mobile Money Monitoring, the Minister disclosed that the Common Platform has reported monthly usage for July 2020 of GH¢63.6 billion, 307.1million transactions, with GH¢104.6 million generated by the Operators in transaction fees, with further breakdowns of transaction types for informed policy decision making.
“Additionally, unlike the previous contracts, the Common Platform offers real-time monitoring of 2.5 billion transactions per day within the telecom sector such as calls, SMS, Mobile money transactions and other transactions,” she added.