Stop introducing “backdoor” taxes, says tax analyst

Dr John Amoh says the introduction of “backdoor” taxes is preventing the government from widening the tax net

Dr John Amoh, a taxation lecturer at the University of Professional Studies is asking the government to address the inherent challenges confronting the Value Added Tax policy.

He said the introduction of “backdoor” taxes is preventing the government from widening the tax net.

Speaking at the second edition of the PFM Tax Africa Network Dialogue Series, Dr Amoh noted that the VAT has failed in achieving one of its key objectives.

“Without enough revenue, it will be very difficult to achieve the kind of sustainable development that the country requires. So we need to address the teething problem that has been with us for 20 years.

“I believe some of these backdoor introductions of taxes must stop. The multiplicity of taxes must stop so that it can encourage people to contribute their quota by paying their taxes,” he said.

He revealed that the country has only 4.4% taxpayers.

VAT was first introduced in Ghana in 1995 and was meant to replace both sales and services taxes.

The 1995 implementation failed and was reintroduced in 1998 after some public education campaigns to sensitise citizens on the importance and benefits of the tax.

Lack of proper education and propaganda are the main ingredients that analysts attribute to the failure of the first introduction of VAT.

Nii Okantah Ankrah Jnr

Asaase Radio 99.5 – tune in or log on to broadcasts online
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