Business News of Saturday, 7 July 2012
The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) is fashioning out a Small Taxpayer Scheme to rope in majority of players in the informal sector into the tax net.
This was disclosed by officials at a forum in Kumasi to raise public awareness on some modernization policies being implemented by the Authority.
The revenue collection agencies have in times past rolled out a number of products, aimed at bridging the gap between potential and actual tax payers.
Such products targeted at the informal sector include the IRS Tax Stamp, the Vehicle Income Tax and the VAT Flat Rate Scheme.
However some participants at the self-assessment seminar for GRA taxpayers in Kumasi expressed concerns at what they described as ‘tax holiday’ for the informal sector.
They also questioned the viability of a voluntary tax compliance drive by the Authority.
But Robert Mensah, an official at the GRA’s Public Affairs Department, believes improved customer relations and service delivery will encourage voluntary filing of taxes.
According to him, the Authority has arrangements, including the small taxpayer scheme, to rope majority of players in the informal sector into the tax net.
“With education, with the electronic system, with the tax identification number system, I think we’ll be able to capture many people in the bracket that at the end of the day, they’ll come and complement what public and private sector persons are paying, courtesy the Pay-As-You-Earn [PAYE] system”.
The seminar afforded the GRA an opportunity to sensitize its taxpayers on the relevance of the integration of the agencies into business and national revenue mobilization.
With the passage of GRA Act, 2009 (Act 791), the Ghana Revenue Authority took over completely the responsibilities of the erstwhile Customs, Excise and Preventive Service (CEPS), Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Value Added Tax Service (VATS) and Revenue Agencies Governing Board (RAGB).
Officials say the integration of the agencies has significantly enhanced the administration of domestic tax and customs revenue in Ghana.