Sunday, 14 July

Gov’t announces innovative ways to collect property taxes

Ken Ofori-Atta - Finance Minister

Minister of Finance Ken Ofori-Atta has said the government, as part of efforts to improve its revenue mobilisation drive, has introduced innovative measures to collect property taxes in the country. 

Presenting the 2022 budget statement and economic policy on the floor of parliament on Wednesday, 17 November 2021, the minister said the government is strategising to assist the Metropolitan, Municipal and Districts Assemblies (MDAs) to implement a common platform for property rate administration to enable them effectively collect property rates in the country. 

He said: “Mr Speaker, property rates have the potential to increase revenue mobilisation for MDAs and release resources for provision of basic infrastructure as well as the needs of our localities”.

“Property rate assessment and collection pose a challenge to most MMDAs and are fraught with inefficiencies”. 

The “government, through the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), will, from January 2022, assist the MMDAs to implement a common platform for property rate administration to enhance property rate collections and its accountability”, he noted.

“To ensure cost recovery by government in providing the infrastructure for the collection of the Rate, a sharing ratio will be agreed with the Assemblies,” he added.

With dwindling revenue streams attributable to the slowdown in business activities occasioned by the Coronavirus pandemic, Ghana is lagging behind most of its peers within the West African sub-region as far as the tax-to-Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ratio is concerned. 

While Ghana is doing below 15 per cent, countries in the sub-region like Cote d’Ivoire and Nigeria are hovering around an average of 18 per cent, prompting government to employ innovative ways of broadening its tax net. 

The minister explained that while the hardship Ghanaians have been experiencing due to the coronavirus pandemic is not lost on the government, it is also necessary that the government improves its revenue mobilisation in an economy put under extreme distress by the pandemic.