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No VAT hike – Ofori-Atta

Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta has told parliament categorically that there will not be any increase in Value Added Tax (VAT) as widely speculated.

It had been reported by some media houses that the government intended increasing VAT from 17.5% to 21.5%.

The speculation was sparked by Mr Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko, nephew to President Nana Akufo-Addo, on social media.

The Minority in Parliament and the main opposition National Democratic Congress took issue with the government over the speculation and vowed to fight any such tax increase.

However, Mr Ofori-Atta told parliament on Thursday, 19 July 2018 that there will be no increase in VAT and urged the opposition to “stop taking directions on economic policies from social media”.

“Mr Speaker, last year we abolished numerous taxes. The scale of tax reductions had never been implemented in the 60 years of Ghana’s economic history since independence. The evidence shows that the economy has responded positively to these tax cuts. What is also clear to us Mr Speaker is that we are not collecting as much as we should.

“The solution to this problem, however, is not necessarily, imposition of many taxes, we must first make sure that we ensure compliance with existing tax laws, plug the leakages in the existing system, ensure value-for-money for the expenditures that government undertakes and ensure Mr Speaker, that the wealthy also pay their fair share. Me Speaker, any taxes should be to elicit socially desirable outcomes such as a better environment in this regard.

“I’ll like to inform the house Mr Speaker that there will be no increase in VAT”, Mr Ofori-Atta stressed.

Source: Ghana/ClassFMonline.com

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