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Business News of Thursday, 16 August 2018


No mobile money tax in 2019 budget – Government

Government has said it has not considered introducing taxes on mobile money transactions in the 2019 budget.

There are growing concerns from the telcos that the Akufo-Addo-led government is planning to tax the thriving mobile money business.

Some government officials have argued that the idea of taxing mobile money transactions is to generate revenue for government.

But speaking at MTN’s Mobile Money Stakeholders Forum in Accra, Deputy Finance Minister, Kweku Kwarteng, said government has not taken any decision to tax mobile money.

He said: “Well I would say that in the coming budget, government has not made a decision to impose taxes on mobile money transactions as it is being suggested, but if at all government is minded to introduce any taxes related to mobile money, government will do so sensitive to the consequences and we’ll make sure that the balance is right.

“It is not possible to, at this point, say that government will do one thing or will not do one thing. What I can assure you is that it is with a lot of difficulty that we made those decisions to introduce the tax measures we did in the mid-year review.

“We will not introduce new taxes unless we genuinely believe that we are better off doing that in keeping the macroeconomy stable, so our businesses can grow and keep the economy strong.”

General Manager for Mobile Money Services at MTN, Eli Hene called for a dialogue before any introduction of taxes on mobile money transactions when government decides in the near future to do so.

He told Class Business that: “What he said is very assuring for us and even more important for us is where he says we’ll continue to dialogue because I believe dialogue helps everybody to understand where each other is.

“In this industry, there is still a lot of understanding required from even policymakers and the government and other stakeholders, and, so, once we dialogue and expose them, we also learn from them and work together to be able to achieve what we intend to achieve. So, for me, it is very assuring but also more important is the door now open for us to dialogue and look into the future.”