Tuesday, 30 May

We need e-levy so we stop begging, borrowing – Ursula

According to the minister, online businesses are out of reach of the GRA thus do not pay the needed taxes and the e-levy will correct that anomaly

Minister of Communications and Digitalisation, Mrs Ursula Owusu-Ekuful, has said online businesses across the country continue to deprive the government of the needed revenue, thus, the introduction of the e-levy to ensure that such entities contribute to revenue mobilisation.

According to the minister, online businesses are out of reach of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), thus, do not pay the needed taxes – a situation the e-levy is meant to correct.

Speaking in Koforidua on Thursday, 27 January 2022 at a town hall meeting, the minister noted that the introduction of the levy will create a digital market place for both buyers and sellers.

“Businesses have moved from physical locations to online, outside the reach of the GRA, depriving the government of the much-needed revenue”.

“We need to revert that and the e-levy would do that. It would enable the government to build proper digital infrastructure, create a digital market place which would connect buyers and sellers.”

The minister also dispelled assertions that the proposed e-levy will amount to double taxation.

“When you use a credit or a debit card you pay between two to three percent transaction fees and the levy is on the lower end of the total cost. All bank transfers also attract bank charges so it is not true that this is going to be double taxation or tax our capital as well”, she explained.

She emphasised the benefits the levy will have on the country, such as the creation of employment opportunities for the youth and ensuring that the government achieves the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“We would have funding for the road construction and maintenance and more reliable payment for existing contracts, to reduce the overall burden on the government. Such infrastructure development would also create more jobs for the youth and cut down on youth unemployment. As YouthStart would also do.”

“If the funds are not generated internally, we will either go and beg for aid [or] borrow; and, so, we cannot continue to go borrowing and begging to finance our development”.

“The government is seeking to meet its agenda of ‘Ghana Beyond Aid’ and this requires all of us to support the e-levy and contribute our quota to national development”.

“More financing inclusion and digitise empowerment in our society would also ensue. The seventeen Sustainable Development Goals are there for the government to achieve including reducing gender equality, education, providing clean water and sanitation,” Mrs Owusu-Ekuful stated.


Source: classfmonline.com/Elikem Adiku